Resilient ports

Nowadays, airport planning must be viewed as an ecosystem in permanent transformation, which does not work in isolation but is an integral part of its immediate environment. As well as other sectors that directly influence its daily development such as tourism, foreign trade, defense, territorial integration, and social connectivity, but above all, its planning must be aligned with the objectives and policies of the State.

 

Evaluating the above, the planning of the air system should be focused not only on aircraft, infrastructure, and services but also on sustainability (social, environmental, and economic) and should not lose its articulation with the urban planning where they are located.

 

The current situation must be taken into account in airport planning, while analyzing the past and how things were done to foresee the future and improve processes, building different scenarios, considering all possible variables, and dimensioning their influence.

 

The truth is that we are in constant evolution, and situations change overnight, but today, keeping airport development at the forefront of technology is vital to lay the foundations. This allows a sector in constant development to grow and meet the demand of travelers for more efficient services and transform their travel experience.

 

Airport development management has a responsibility to take advantage of the buildings, facilities, and infrastructure available to them and evaluate their full capacity to adapt and create resilient infrastructures that promote the sustainability of the industry, but above all foster innovation.

 

Using technological platforms makes it possible to optimize resources without the need for large investments in infrastructure. Additionally, they facilitate the daily work of airport employees, while benefiting travelers who obtain high-quality services with state-of-the-art technology that offers them: greater data security, more efficient waiting times, and, obviously, greater convenience when using systems such as self-check-in. Also, biometric systems for passenger control or zero-contact technologies have become so popular in recent times.

 

Undoubtedly, the airport sector has had a rapid capacity to adapt and has weathered one of the worst crises in history, but if anything is clear, it is that airport planning must be very resilient and mutate step by step, to adapt to the needs.  Above all, they must be open to learning, take advantage of every innovative technology that facilitates data collection and analysis, and be very dynamic in decision-making, which will allow them to cushion the impact of any situation that may arise.

 

Ports digitization: Application of digital twins in the maritime industry

The maritime industry has always been a sector considered traditional, however, new digital technologies open an opportunity for the modernization of the port sector that increasingly faces greater challenges in terms of resource management, infrastructure, management of meteorological events, and even changes in consumer habits.

 

To provide greater reliability in the services offered and to deal with any disagreement that could threaten to paralyze the sector, many ports worldwide have chosen to join the era of digitalization, investing a large part of their budgets in technological tools that allow them not only to streamline their processes. But rather to create smart ports that provide more and better services at each step of their logistics chain.

 

The creation of digital twins in the port context allows, among many other things, to generate impact study models in any area of the logistics chain or the community and thus predict the best alternatives for the development of a specific niche or new services. All this digitally tested in different scenarios and without real risks, which facilitates decision making, cost reduction and especially implementation times.

 

Nowadays, digital twins are one of the most used technologies in almost all sectors, due to their analysis potential to improve the behavior of systems, processes, services, and simulations of any type of assets of any company. 

 

The crisis generated by the Covid-19 pandemic helped accelerate the implementation of this type of information technologies since they ensure the permanence of companies in the market, but above all, because many sectors evidenced the importance of data analysis, remote monitoring of activities, and prediction of future scenarios.

 

Most of the implementations of digital twins are based on Big Data and are combined with artificial intelligence methods since it enables the dynamic and updated representation in real time of a real and/or physical system, but being itself a controlled and safe environment for experimentation, which allows to detect failures, plan maintenance tasks, avoid delays or unexpected stops and best of all is that you can build and test new scenarios, more efficient and agile; without risking new investments.

 

The implementation of a digital twin in the port sector, not only allows a significant improvement in the decision-making of shipping companies, port operators, and other ecosystem players but also facilitates the creation of regulations that encourage the integration of transport supply chain operations and collaborative work.

 

Having a digital twin model in the maritime sector influences 3 main areas such as fleet, port, and terminal optimization. Ecosystem stakeholder analysis and end-to-end supply chain optimization.

 

Digital transformation brings with it a disruption of business strategies, plans for a cultural change, how things are done, and how the new processes will be to compete in a new digital environment, which leads us to understand that we are facing the technological revolution of the maritime industry.

 

Reduced traffic at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

In previous articles, we talked about the challenges facing airports worldwide that affect them both positively and negatively. However, this has led to immense solutions that have served as a bridge to improve flight quality, airport traffic, and the development of new opportunities. 

Many airports have gone through a crisis of staff shortages at airports ,and so far, airports like London Airport have managed to mitigate the processes. Others like Amsterdam Airport have taken medium-term measures to ease the long queues and a large number of passengers transiting through the airport. 

That’s right, Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam announced a reduction in the number of passengers that will be able to transit through the airport. This is due to the lack of security personnel at the airport in the Netherlands in previous months. 

This measure will be in place until the end of March 2023. Thanks to this, the maximum number of passengers will also depend on previous agreements with the airlines, which will require more elaborate planning to minimize the consequences. 

In this sense, the aim is to minimize waiting times, and long queues and also to ensure the safety of the thousands of passengers who transit daily. Also to avoid collapse and various cancellations due to lack of personnel. 

Automatic passenger transit

Likewise, many technology companies are currently working on the creation of technologies that work under artificial intelligence to improve airport transit mechanisms, administrative processes, security, loading, unloading, and much more. 

Such is the case of GP Nauticals, who have developed a software system, especially for the aeronautical and maritime sectors. With a SUITE of products that are integrated to cover different types of needs, with the ability to analyze data in real-time that allow improvements in the development of the airport. 

Also, thanks to PAX AIMS, the airport will be able to audit passenger traffic, thanks to different checkpoints that allow scanning of boarding passes where the passenger and boarding list can be validated with the concessionaires to proceed to check-in. 

 This is just a small sample of the services that GP Nauticals has to offer. If you want to know more about each of our products do not hesitate to visit our products section

 

Total Airport Management Systems

Nowadays, technological transformation is a process that has been very present in all industries. However, in the airport sector it has made it possible to alleviate a series of deficiencies that had been occurring both externally and internally and that were slowing down its processes and hindering the development of the sector.

Having a total airport management system benefits travelers who spend long hours in airport facilities to check their luggage. Go through border controls and wait for the aircraft to be ready to finally make the flight, since this is only a small part of what an airport operates.

Optimizing each one of its operations, such as security, both of facilities and travelers, concessions, routes, airlines, administration and check-in, suppliers, among others. 

It guarantees an articulated and collaborative decision making process, where everyone involved has first hand information and in real time, which enables a great improvement in efficiency and avoids important monetary losses.

The main objective of an airport management system is to interconnect and integrate most of the information handled within the airport, thus ensuring the maximum flow of information on its operations, management and security, which results in a more efficient final service for travelers and more profitable for the airport.

The number of passengers increases year after year, which can end up collapsing airport operations and facilities, but building additional infrastructure is not always the most appropriate solution, due to high costs, permitting and development times; While implementing technological tools that help optimize the use of the infrastructure and its resources leads to a much lower investment, more controlled integration times and great benefits by considerably reducing the time aircraft spend on the ground, reducing fuel consumption, emissions and especially flight delays, something that passengers will surely appreciate.

A good airport management system brings together the operational complexities of airlines, airports and suppliers, encouraging the development and evolution of the industry, allowing a modular growth according to the traffic forecasts and commercial strategies of the interested parties, and all this thanks to the information management provided by this type of system.

Having real-time access to all the data derived from airport operations creates opportunities for improvement in very short periods of time that without this type of systems would take years to collect and analyze, to finally move on to a decision-making process where each participant will look after its own interests and not those of the community in general.

Currently many airports are looking to implement airport management systems and already in the market there is a significant amount of specialized software that in turn consist of several independent systems such as passenger check-in, passenger control, aeronautical fuel suppliers, among others that allow organizations to assemble a customized system that can integrate perfectly with their current software without having to paralyze operations or make large investments of money, time and knowledge transfer.

As we have mentioned in other articles, the software development company GP Nauticals has on the market a series of administrative systems for the aviation sector that separately can work to optimize a particular niche and optimize its operations, but that together create a robust administrative system that includes all the processes and port operations. If you want to know more about their range of products I invite you to visit their website. www.gpnauticals.com 

 

Airports incorporate high-tech

Airports incorporate high-tech. If we are talking about technological innovations, airports worldwide already enjoy the installation of technological devices that have been designed to improve the airport experience, from the moment you arrive at the terminal until you reach your destination. 

That’s right, in the past we could mention biometric structures, changes, and new trends in air terminals. 

However, today we will talk about security screening at Leonardo Da Vinci Airport in Rome and, about the implementation of autonomous capsules for people with limited mobility at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, United States. 

Secure carry-on baggage screening…

At Leonardo Da Vinci International Airport in Rome, the installation of high-tech scanners capable of detecting explosives and narcotics began. Conducted under the Smiths Detection organization, 30 inspection systems will be set up at Leonardo Da Vinci at different checkpoints. 

Smiths Detection’s HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX X-ray technology is capable of producing high-resolution volumetric 3D images to visualize the contents of carry-on baggage. This raises efficiency standards and will help reduce false alarms. 

In addition, with this technology, it will not be necessary to remove electronic items and liquids from baggage, which makes passenger screening optimal and less time-consuming. 

Autonomy for passengers with reduced mobility…

To enable users with reduced mobility to move around the airport with peace of mind, A&K Robotics and Southwest Airlines carried out tests of robotic capsules to assist passengers with limited mobility. 

The tests were conducted in Concourse C at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL), USA. This is undoubtedly a great improvement in the travel experience for passengers, where now, thanks to these autonomous electric modules, they will be able to move safely through the airport, reach boarding gates or move around the facilities.

These are just some of the technological innovations that are taken into account worldwide. That is why, to keep pace with the new era, it is necessary to improve and optimize the user experience in air terminals.

Likewise, the administrative infrastructure is also considered fundamental for the development of airports. To this effect, GP NAUTICALS has developed software that can be integrated to meet the needs of air terminals. 

If you want to know more just go to the products section and get to know the AIMS SUITE.

 

The use of biometrics in the aeronautical sector

The future is already here and thanks to the technological advances we are living today, we can use biometrics as a control and access system. Analyzing our facial features or body measurements that make each person a unique human being with specific characteristics.

But what does this process consist of? 

To identify a subject, all that is needed is to compare an incoming image with an image in the database. However, in the aeronautical field, this is a process that must be carried out in real-time and supported by software and a database that provides sufficient security to airport facilities.

 

For this reason, airports that have already implemented technologies like this support it with government databases that support their security personnel while streamlining their passenger check-in processes.

 

Using a passenger access control system with biometrics brings many advantages to the aviation industry, such as speeding up the entry process, making it faster and more efficient, and reducing the probability of identity fraud, since the system will identify the passenger’s features by comparing them with certified databases. 

 

Software without human manipulation, this type of technology and devices used to provide access cannot be manipulated, so the information handled here is secure and reliable. And last but not least hygiene, as the type of devices used for biometric identification or facial recognition, does not require any kind of contact, so it is ideal in these times of pandemic.

 

According to Annet Steenbergen, chair of the passenger facilitation working group at IATA, “The use of the human body as an authentication system will be the salvation to speed up the movement of people in air terminals”. Especially when it is expected that by 2037, more than 8 million passengers will be using airplanes for their transfers, more than twice as many as today.

 

Identification solutions using biometrics or facial recognition not only eliminate manual processes, offer a more satisfactory service for passengers, and reduce their waiting times at the airport but also help airlines and air terminals to comply with government and border agency regulations.

 

So far, the main use of facial recognition technology has been in the check-in areas of airports. However, within the same air terminals, it can also be used to provide privileged access to VIP lounges for frequent travelers, access to restricted areas for airport workers, or to offer specific premium services for those passengers who wish to pay for a more pleasant trip. 

 

At the moment, the implementation of facial recognition in the aviation industry is in its early stages, but we are sure that it will revolutionize the sector and replace many processes that are not so friendly so far.

 

Technological development in seaports

The growth of seaports is imminent, every day ports face new challenges that invite them to reinforce their infrastructures and look for new mechanisms and innovate old systems. 

With the consolidation of maritime trade, new transport routes have been opened, an increased number of containers, and new ports that require the optimization of processes amid an ecosystem full of competencies that seeks to minimize human error and sustainability over time.

With this, it is expected that in the medium term, seaports will have to implement certain automation to maintain their sustainability, effectiveness, and efficiency over time. 

Likewise, several of the components of the port sector are already working to implement the automation of maritime containers, autonomous ships, intelligent port warehouses, and more. These are just some of the technological innovations that are expected in the coming years.

Now, all the challenges are positive, and the demand for automation in the processes will help to generate greater safety and efficiency within each of the processes. This involves not only an investment in structure but also in intelligent resources, training and cybersecurity software to safeguard data. 

Less paper and more digitalization 

The changes at the port level will be progressive and adapted to the needs of each seaport. However, the administrative part also deserves digitization to boost the development of a port and thus ensure the optimization of each of the maritime operations. 

That is why, GP Nauticals has developed NAUTIC AIMS, designed to unify maritime and land operations, in a software that manages port revenues, through technologies that allow to collect and analyze information that will also help to measure the performance of ports. 

This SUITE product can also be integrated with PAY AIMS, the software that allows you to manage the payment and collection of invoices through innovative systems that adapt to the needs of each organization. 

 

If you want to keep reading about the latest developments in automation in the port and aeronautical sector, keep browsing our blog

 

​​New opportunities for the aeronautical sector

The Covid-19 pandemic caused the worst crisis ever known for the aviation sector. With government restrictions forcing many airlines and airports to reduce many of their staff and cancel thousands of daily flights, which has negatively impacted not only the quality of service provided to passengers but even the image of one of the most important industries for the global economy.

 

Now, we could say that we are in a post-pandemic era and airport activity has been recovering almost to the level of two years ago. We are plunged into a chaos of flight cancellations, long lines, and delays, and now the most important airports have many limitations in takeoffs and landings due to a lack of qualified personnel and high traffic volumes.

 

This personnel crisis particularly affects passenger control of aircraft handling, including flight attendants and at this point, we could ask ourselves, if the sector has already recovered, what are they waiting for to hire more staff? Well, the answer is more than simple, first of all, airlines and airports are not offering very attractive conditions, and secondly, hiring security-related personnel requires a very specific profile, and preparing them for these vacancies can even take more than 6 months.

 

So how can the current crisis in the aviation industry be alleviated? 

 

Many of these cases could be significantly improved with a restructuring of their resources. Still, the reactivation practically all at once did not allow many to prepare in advance and foresee this situation.

 

However, the implementation of innovative technologies that allow them to perform specific actions and at the same time provide them with the necessary security required by this sector could be essential and we must evaluate whether it is really necessary to hire more staff or whether to invest in technologies that support these more specific areas and help reduce the time of this specialized personnel. 

 

For these areas, software such as Pax AIMS is available, which allows airlines and airports to keep track and control passengers at any port facility, deploying fixed or mobile checkpoints and all by scanning boarding passes, which helps to validate passenger lists. 

 

Additionally, this software can be integrated with Pay AIMS which is responsible for collecting this data to initiate the debt collection process. In this way, concessionaires can optimize their resources and use them where support is most needed while ground personnel have tools to facilitate their daily tasks.

 

Technologies for airport management

In our articles, we talk about the digital transformation in the airport sector and the benefits it brings, to  passengers and also to the administration. 

The passenger’s opinion is more critical, from the entrance to an airport, the user becomes the judge who will give the final verdict, to evaluate improvements in the airport sector. 

This is reflected in the results provided year after year by Skytrax, which not only rewards airlines but also airports. 

That is why, we see that airports continue to break new ground and go beyond barriers to provide comfort, confidence, and punctuality from start to finish. 

A sample of what we talked is the Passenger Terminal Expo, which this year returned to Paris to bring it new trends, innovations, and materials to improve the experience at airports worldwide. 

Technological proposals on demand…

This year has the particularity that the technological leap is imminent. From Artificial Intelligence proposals, intelligent surveillance, and interactive kiosks to easily find boarding gates and terminals. 

Intelligent baggage handling logistics and, many more offerings are just some of the challenges that port management will face in the coming years. 

This results in a wide range of options to further improve the technological development structures at large airports. 

And it gives rise to those airports that are still in the process of development, which can join these endless technological options that ensure sustainability, durability, and confidence over time. 

That is why, at GP Nauticals we rely on developing specialized software to provide the port administration, a window that allows us to manage payments, collections, and everything related to billing and administration in a simple way. 

In addition, our SUITE is integrated to improve the performance and management of an airport, thanks to the analysis and reports that allow you to visualize results firsthand. 

Meet PAY AIMS, AERO AIMS, and all the SUITE that GP Nauticals have to facilitate and optimize the time of administrative procedures. 

Technology and Big Data improve the experience at airports around the world

These are times of great changes and with them, we have to adapt and do things differently. However, I would dare to say that the airport sector has rethought from many angles the way it had been operating and providing its services. Now we can find “super modern” airports where the priority is to provide a positive travel experience by making passenger traffic more efficient, but how did they achieve this?

The development of specific technology for the industry, and big data have been a fundamental key to having more efficient airport management. Since the analysis of this data allows them to predict and measure the movement of passengers, determine schedules, routes, and travelers’ crowds to manage resources more optimally.

Airport technology trends aimed at improving the experience and satisfaction of travelers are leveraged on mobile devices supported by the cloud, which allows modernizing the operational and logistical environment of airport facilities.

A good example of this type of technology is Seeking, implemented in Barajas T4 and El Prat T1. Which allows the airport to know how passengers move around its facilities, even if they visit the Duty-Free and VIP lounges if they connect to the airport WI-FI and even send relevant information. In this way, they provide an anonymous digital identity and track each of their actions, being able to analyze the behavior of their passengers and detect new business niches.

The operational evolution of airports with the analysis of this data in real-time allows greater planning in terms of infrastructure management, which translates into greater convenience for the traveler. 

If a flight arrives at the airport and has a later connection, it could be more easily planned to provide a nearby gate to avoid travelers from transit long distances. Thus shortening the waiting time of the plane on the ground optimizing the service and providing a better user experience and this can only be achieved with data collection and analysis.

Currently and as mentioned above, much-specialized software is being developed for the aviation industry, as is the case of GP Nauticals Suite, which focuses mainly on optimizing airport management and facilitating the collection and analysis of information in each of its areas and with minimal investment. 

If you want to learn more about GP Nauticals and see all the products available, you can do so by visiting their website or contacting a specialist in the area.