Solar power for Van Nuys

Van NuysLos Angeles World Airports has joined with local elected leaders and aviation executives to further embrace sustainable energy with the announcement of solar power generation at Van Nuys general aviation airport.

The airport’s business tenant, Aeroplex/Aerolease Group, showcased the recent operational launch of its solar rooftop and canopy installation, which is a first at the station, while six other business tenants also unveiled solar energy project commitments. This is the first instalment of a solar power generation project at a Los Angeles airport, although there are other projects in the pipeline, pending regulatory approvals.

Upon completion of all seven projects that have been presented, the airport will become one of California’s leading general aviation airports for solar energy production.

El Dorado shines through

El Dorado International airport is set to become the greenest terminal in South America, with an array of 10,000 solar panels which are destined to be fully operational in 2019. At the time of writing, installation of the panels had just begun. 

The panels, which will occupy an area the size of 20 Olympic swimming pools, are part of a wider plan intended make the airport the greenest in the region. It is thought that within the space of eight months some 12% of the airport’s energy requirements will be attributable to solar energy harvesting.

The airport, which is the third busiest passenger airport in the region, and was named in March as the best airport in South America in the annual World Airport Awards.

US self-bag-drop breakthrough at Denver airport

The ongoing renovation of Denver International airport is to see world’s largest installation of self-bag-drops, provided by self-service specialist Materna US.

The implementation of the Materna self-bag-drop systems is part of the US$650m Denver International airport’s Great Hall project that is under way. As part of the redevelopment of Jeppesen Terminal, Materna has been commissioned to provide 176 hybrid self-bag-drop units and 40 check-in kiosks by 2020.

This will make the airport the world’s largest self-bag-drop installation and the first major US airport to fully embrace the services. Denver airport is currently increasing its capacity significantly and investing in this technology will help to serve approximately 80m passengers per year in future, up from the 50m it was originally designed to handle.

The planned expansion also focuses on improving airport security and improving the passenger journey and experience.

Materna’s self-bag-drop solution comprises a classic agent counter combined with a self-bag-drop unit and scanner portal positioned over the conveyor to scan baggage tags. The scanner unit only accepts baggage of the correct size and weight, which will help to ensure safe baggage handling processes are followed. The kiosks are equipped with Materna’s common use (CUSS) platform that all carriers can use and some major airlines are already undergoing integration.

The customisable solution gives the airport and its passengers the highest level of flexibility in passenger handling, as it allows both self-service and personal service at the counter.

This project in the US is an important milestone for Materna’s global activities and those in North America in particular.

Materna has already successfully completed proof of concepts and full installations at numerous airports in the America, including Toronto, John Wayne airport, Montreal, Miami, Quebec and Minneapolis-Saint Paul International airport.

STS to offer GSE refurbishment

STS Aviation Group has announced the launch of STS GSE Services, a company based in Melbourne, Florida, will be dedicated to offering maintenance, refurbishment, spare parts and warranty services for the aircraft ground support equipment market.

Mark Smith, Group President of STS Aviation, will oversee the operations of STS GSE Services alongside Gabriel Girard, who has been promoted from his former role as Operations Manager for STS Mod Center to Director of Operations for STS GSE Services.

STS pic“As President of every company under STS’ Maintenance, Engineering and Modification Group, I am always looking for new and exciting ways to create synergies,” explains Smith. “Take STS Mod Center and STS Line Maintenance, for example. These two companies will now have a go-to company for GSE services, and that company will be internally housed under the STS Aviation Group umbrella. These types of synergies not only save us money, but we’re able to pass on those savings to all of our clients requiring GSE services.”

In addition to servicing aircraft ground support equipment at its aircraft hangar facility in Melbourne, the offshoot will be looking to repair GSE at STS’ growing network of line maintenance stations across the US and the Bahamas.

Swifter check-in for GOL passengers

GOL is introducing new self-service bag-drop technology to speed up the airport experience. Passengers of the carrier can now use SITA’s Scan&Fly to check in their bags when flying domestically from Rio de Janeiro International – and will soon be able to do so at São Paulo–Guarulhos International airport as well. This self-service option halves the time it takes to check in a bag and gives passengers more control over their journey.GOL

Each year, GOL flies around 32m passengers. Providing significant reductions in the time it takes to check in is a major bonus for passengers, as well as helping GOL reach the targets set as part of the IATA Fast Travel programme.

Sergio Quito, Vice President of GOL Operations, commented: “GOL has always pioneered the use of innovative processes. Self-service is important for us because it improves the customer experience and helps streamline our operations. SITA’s self bag-drop technology provides what we look for – it is fast, reliable and easy to use.”

SITA is retro-fitting Scan&Fly units at each airport. Using this facility, passengers will be able to check in their baggage in a mere 40 seconds. As well as the units themselves, SITA also provided consultancy to develop the optimised processes in both airports, integrating the solution with the airlines’ and airports’ infrastructures.

Power Stow named Southwest Airlines’ Equipment Provider of the Year

The award was presented to Power Stow in recognition of meeting Southwest Airlines’ expectations for on time deliveries, equipment reliability, customer service, parts support and training.

(L to r) Larry Laney, Director of Ground Support, Southwest Airlines and Ben Reeves, Vice President, Power Stow Americas

(L to r) Larry Laney, Director of Ground Support, Southwest Airlines and Ben Reeves, Vice President, Power Stow

Power Stow also received the award in 2015.

Ben Reeves, Vice President of Power Stow Americas, commented on the award. “My co-workers and I are very honoured to be recognised by Southwest Airlines. We strive every day to provide a highly reliable product on time with World Class customer service. We truly appreciate the relationship that we have with the folks at Southwest GSE.”

Larry Laney, Director of Ground Support for Southwest Airlines, said: “From proof of concept to the decision of making Power Stow a standard piece of equipment in our fleet, the Power Stow Team has done an outstanding job throughout the entire process. As a result of their outstanding performance in 2017, we at Southwest are honoured to present this award to Power Stow again.”

Santiago to benefit from new cargo management system

Hermes Logistics Technologies has been selected as the new cargo management systems provider for UASL, to maximise its air cargo handling and documentation capabilities. Part of the Ultramar Group, Chile-headquartered UASL is a ground handler at Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International airport and sister company of local cargo handling warehouses Depocargo and Teisa.

Hermes 5, the innovative new version of Hermes’ Cargo Management System and Hub Management System applications, is planned to be implemented at Santiago this year.

“The H5 implementation at UASL is a full Software as a Service implementation where UASL will benefit from a fast Cloud H5 deployment that could see the system live as early as the third quarter of 2018,” said Yuval Baruch, CEO of Hermes Logistics Technologies. Hermes in Santiago

“Once H5 is implemented at Santiago, UASL will have its own, fully integrated management tool that will interface with its local community and customers, allowing for smarter process flows, messaging compliance and more control over key areas such as Customs, service management and revenue accounting.

“We are delighted to have been selected by Chile’s leading logistics group, marking HLT’s further expansion into the South American market and look forward to support UASL’s and Ultramar’s expansion plans.” The Hermes implementation will offer UASL a single system that is configured to its needs and the changing requirements of its growing customer base.

Hermes commenced the global roll-out of H5 earlier this year with the implementation of its CMS at the ALS Cargo Terminal at Noi Bai International airport in Hanoi.

Avro’s new GSE rolled out

Avro GSE, a subsidiary of Saskarc Industries, has launched a new line of powered equipment.

Not only is the equipment modern, efficient and green, but it is also equipped with a fleet management system, that of Avro Tracker. This comes with a one year managed maintenance programme called Avro Care. 

Avro’s new GSE range includes several models of baggage tractor, an aircraft pushback tractor, a beltloader and other equipment besides. Several of these units are running on electric, which will help customers reduce their carbon footprint and cut costs. In addition, all of the equipment is specifically manufactured to withstand the harsh North American climate and comes with a 12 month warranty.  

avroUnder the Avro Care programme, Avro GSE proactively monitors and manages all Avro GSE powered equipment and vehicle maintenance requirements for one year, although longer subscription terms are available. With three tiered service levels of Avro Tracker available, the Avro Care programme is designed to enhance operations by helping to avoid unscheduled downtime through malfunctioning equipment or poor operator behaviour. This fleet management solution, combined with the vendor managed maintenance programme, aims at prolonging equipment life and maximising the value, performance and efficiency of the assets. 

Trego Dugan on a roll

Trego/Dugan Aviation has been awarded eight new airline ground handling contracts so far in 2018. These include above and below the wing contracts for Allegiant at Fort Lauderdale, Charleston International and Nashville; Spirit at Port Columbus TRego DuganInternational; Frontier at Spokane; Alaska at Pittsburgh International and WOW Air at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky.

Company President Vince Dugan commented: “Trego Dugan is very pleased with the growth we are enjoying with existing airline partners as well as the addition of new customers. 2018 is shaping up as a banner year for TDA.” The company currently provides ground handling in 26 cities around the US.

Orlando welcomes biometric facilities

SITA has been chosen by the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority as the technology partner for biometric exit at Orlando International airport. Orlando International becomes the first US airport to fully deploy the US Customs & Border Protection Biometric Entry and Exit Programme. Over the coming months, SITA will integrate Smart Path, its sophisticated biometric technology, at the airport’s 30 international boarding gates.SITA man-face-biometric-points-1240x954

Earlier this year, SITA worked with GOAA, British Airways and CBP to incorporate the US biometric departure check for British Airways’ customers. The trial’s success has prompted airport-wide implementation of the technology. The system makes passenger boarding both quicker and easier, while it also incorporates the new secure biometric exit checks. Currently, British Airways is boarding flights of almost 240 customers in around 15 minutes. With Smart Path, passengers look at a camera, without having to present boarding passes or passports.

John Newsome, Chief Information Officer, GOAA, commented: “Our decision to implement biometric exit checks across the whole airport follows a hugely successful live trial. The innovative boarding process we tested is really popular with passengers. They simply look at the camera and within seconds the gate opens and they can board the flight. It is easy, fast and most importantly, secure. The solution works on common-use boarding gates and can be easily used by the many international airlines that we serve at Orlando.”

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