APRIL 5, 6, 7, 2022 | PARIS, FRANCE

“After the chaos and challenges of 2020/21, Passenger Terminal EXPO & CONFERENCE looks forward to a triumphant return in April 2022. It will be staged at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles, Paris, France, which offers a superb combination of large and modern conference rooms plus excellent exhibition space for our exhibitors. So you can be assured that the world’s leading airport design, management and operations event will be rolling out the red carpet with a warm welcome to all of our visitors, speakers and delegates in the spring of 2022” Tony Robinson, show founder and CEO of UKi Media & Events

Passenger Terminal EXPO & CONFERENCE will once again provide the most significant opportunity for airports and airlines to debate current issues and form business relationships on a global scale, with 10,000+ people from at least 130 countries attending each year.

The Passenger Terminal CONFERENCE has firmly established itself as the most highly regarded airport conference in the world. It’s an exceptional opportunity to see industry leaders share their innovations, knowledge and insight through a comprehensive and diverse range of conferences and panel discussions. Attracting 1,900+ senior airport, airline, aviation authority, government and related business executives from all over the world, it is THE place where attendees gather to pool information, address concerns, discuss solutions and exchange ideas for the future development of the world’s airports.

The free-to-attend Passenger Terminal EXPO is the world’s largest annual airport exhibition, covering over 19,000 square meters. It provides a unique opportunity for visitors to see and experience the very latest products, services and technologies, with 300+ exhibitors showcasing the very latest innovations and solutions to enhance efficiency, safety and the passenger experience for airports across the globe.

It’s THE most important international airport networking event of the year – join us in Paris to see why!

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Covid-19: Dubai airport to have world’s largest lab for processing PCR tests

Dubai International Airport will now be home to an in-house lab for processing Covid-19 RT PCR tests.

Located close to Terminal 2, the 20,000 sq. ft laboratory is a dedicated facility for round-the-clock processing of RT-PCR test samples collected from passengers at DXB, Dubai Airports said in a press release.

“Using latest WHO-standard Covid-19 RT-PCR testing equipment, the lab can process up to 100,000 samples per day and provide reliable results within a few hours,” said the statement.

Dubai Airports in collaboration with Dubai Health Authority and Pure Health announced the opening of the lab on Tuesday, June 22.

The lab is equipped with negative and positive pressure rooms and is linked to government reporting platforms ensuring secure and easy sharing of information between health and regulatory authorities and airlines.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of Dubai Airports, said: “As the world’s busiest international hub preparing for a surge in passenger traffic over the summer holidays and beyond, we were keen to make sure that the airport journey is safer, smoother and faster while fulfilling the required health protocols.”

“The lab’s quick turnaround for processing test results will go a long way in helping us deliver a service experience the world expects from Dubai,” he added.

Awad Saghir Al Ketbi, director general of the Dubai Health Authority (DHA), said the laboratory’s capabilities will greatly help reduce waiting times for passengers arriving into Dubai and enable the effective implementation of relevant preventive and safety procedures.

Al Ketbi also noted the DHA’s keenness in expanding the lab’s scope considering that the presence of an in-house processing facility at DXB would enhance monitoring, investigation and proactive preventive steps taken by Dubai, as part of the measures to limit the spread of Covid-19.

Farhan Malik, group CEO of Pure Health, said, “Since the start of the pandemic we have continuously worked with the UAE government to bring the best testing solutions, following international quality standards and faster result reporting, to ensure we support our partners in this very dynamic environment.”

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Hyderabad airport uses video analytics for queue management

The GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd. (GHIAL) has implemented queue management systems combining internet of things security cameras and artificial intelligence video analytics that help improve passenger experience by reducing waiting time at passenger touchpoints. This smart queue management solution uses advanced camera-based video analytics which helps the GHIAL staff to constantly monitor various key parameters such as peak passenger waiting time and take corrective actions as needed which are very essential for the safety of both passengers and airport staff in this pandemic times.

Technology and innovation: Indispensable for the airport of the future

It is a quiet time at Eindhoven Airport due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with significantly fewer passengers and suitcases. But those who think that little is happening are mistaken. The airport is looking beyond the crisis, sticking to its strategy, and working hard with its partners on new innovations and technological solutions for their baggage handling operations.

The Dutch airport in the heart of the Brainport region – a region distinguished by its expertise in technology, design and knowledge – is not about quantity, but about quality. That is why Eindhoven Airport (EIN) is committed to the continuous improvement of the quality of the airport.

“There will come a time when people will get back on their feet,” said Mirjam van den Bogaard, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Eindhoven Airport. “We are ready for this, with an airport that continuously applies smart technology and continues to innovate to make the journey of passengers and the stay of visitors and employees at Eindhoven Airport even more comfortable.”

The airport as a testing ground

According to Mirjam, innovation is the key to an increasingly sustainable and better airport. Eindhoven Airport is working together with its various partners to make its operations even more efficient, sustainable and customer friendly. “As an airport, we have various roles. One important role is that of an inspirational testing ground. An airport is a unique testing ground because you can test in a controlled environment. We like to invite companies to test their innovations and technological solutions with us, and we have found that more and more companies are interested in doing so,” said Mirjam.

For example, Vanderlande and BagsID are conducting a bag recognition pilot trial at the airport, in which artificial intelligence (AI) is being used. A camera located in the baggage system photographs the suitcase and compares this photo with the photo of the suitcase that was previously uploaded into the system. In this way, the suitcase can be better monitored throughout the baggage handling process. According to Mirjam, this offers advantages for loading and unloading aircraft even more efficiently, but also for better streamlining of airport processes. “In the future, passengers will know whether their suitcase is already loaded. It would be nice if this technology could be developed further, to the point where passengers receive a signal on their mobile phone when their suitcase is on the baggage belt,” added Mirjam, who is following the pilot with great interest. “The first results of the pilot show that AI can be applied in the baggage process. There is the potential for this technology to be used everywhere in aviation in the future.”

Using autonomous vehicles

The collaborative work between Vanderlande and Eindhoven continues in another innovation led trial, where autonomous vehicles on the apron will transport luggage to and from the airport.
Previously, Vanderlande conducted live tests with this technology at Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM), gaining insights which further contributed to the development of this solution. RTM will again be the testing ground, as will Eindhoven Airport, where the autonomous vehicle trial will begin in April 2021.

“Our future strategy is based on the belief that innovations in aviation can be implemented faster if different disciplines work together seamlessly”

Mirjam asserted: “Because no driver is needed for transportation, employees can focus on the baggage process itself. Perhaps the process of loading and unloading the aircraft will become more efficient and faster, because individual vehicles will be carrying baggage continuously. Thus, there is no need to wait until the train of baggage carts is fully loaded as there is today.”

Increasing flexibility in the loading and unloading process is a key reason for conducting the trial. “Managing passengers waiting in the arrivals hall for their suitcase is a real puzzle. While it will certainly be some time before we can deploy this new technology, we believe that this new method, the use of data and the deployment of experienced staff will produce an even better baggage process,” Mirjam added.

Self-service technologies improving passenger flows

Technology is also used to improve passenger flow. For example, passengers at Eindhoven will soon be able to print their own baggage labels at bag tag kiosks. Kiosks produced by Flight Solutions are currently being tested. For the time being, baggage labels are still being used in the baggage process. “The use of these kiosks should result in an even faster passenger flow at Drop & Go, because the suitcase is already provided with a self-adhesive label,” detailed Mirjam. “This type of label is easier for passengers to use and prevents ‘unrecognisable’ luggage.”

Mirjam is enthusiastic about the use of technology and conducting pilots at the airport together with airport partners. “Aviation is facing numerous challenges. By innovating, we turn these challenges into opportunities.” Additionally, working with Vanderlande is a logical choice for the COO: “We have been working with Vanderlande, the manufacturer of our baggage systems, for many years. Like us, this company strives to use new technologies to improve the airport process even further. Our future strategy is based on the belief that innovations in aviation can be implemented faster if different disciplines work together seamlessly.”

Innovation as the key to sustainability

Eindhoven is part of the Royal Schiphol Group, which believes that innovation and technology is the key to the most sustainable and best airports in the world. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS) and the other airports within the Group work closely with each other, as well as with external partners, airlines, universities, start-ups, companies and knowledge institutes, in order to validate new developments for the multimedia hubs of the future. Because Eindhoven Airport and the other regional airports of the Schiphol Group act as testing grounds for technology and innovation, the knowledge gained from these tests are shared within the Group and then scaled up.

“The trick is that the use of technology remains at the service of the passenger and the employee, and should never become a barrier”

According to Mirjam, qualitative recovery after COVID-19 is now more important than ever. Technology and innovation help the airport to make efficient use of assets. In many cases, this is also more sustainable. In addition, it is essential to prevent errors and delays to avoid unnecessary costs. The use of technology in aviation becoming increasingly important is crystal clear, according to Mirjam. Aviation started with technology and the drive to achieve the impossible: “The trick is that the use of technology remains at the service of the passenger and the employee, and should never become a barrier. In addition, it helps us to make possible what seems impossible to some: the development of sustainable aviation,” she concluded.

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Touchless Travel Using a Secure Digital ID

Star Alliance Biometrics, powered by NEC I:Delight, enables travelers to use a secure Digital ID to personalize their travel experience. The application allows passengers to create a secure biometric-enabled Digital ID to check in for their flight and drop luggage, go through security, access the VIP lounge, shop at retail stores and board the plane. Built on NEC’s identity management platform, NEC I:Delight, Star Alliance Biometrics is redefining the travel experience from curb-to-gate. To learn more about NEC I:Delight and our other #aviation, #CX and #AI solutions, visit

11 Projects chosen to develop H2 HUB AIRPORT hydrogen project

The winners were selected from among 124 applicants for the Île-de-France Region project.

The H2 HUB AIRPORT project has announced the 11 winning projects that will be contributing to this hydrogen development.

The renewable energy effort’s call for expressions of interest was met by 124 interested groups.

These 11 projects will contribute to the Île-de-France Region’s H2 HUB AIRPORT project, which will involve the transformation of Paris airports into hydrogen hubs. This is a part of the broader effort from the region to take part in the European Commission’s goal to achieve zero-emission aircrafts by 2035.

The primary themes described in the call for expressions of interest in the project were: hydrogen storage, transportation, and distribution; diversification of H2 use cases in airports in addition to aeronautics in general; and a circular H2 economy.

The selected projects will be central to the development of the H2 HUB AIRPORT project as a whole.

The 11 projects selected to take part will be core building blocks for both the construction of the airport based H2 value chain but also the expansion of the project for covering all the various issues related to an aerospace ecosystem.

Meetings will be held in coming weeks and months to help establish a timeline for each project. The goal will be to help to secure long-term financially feasible hydrogen solutions and to be able to begin the on-site testing starting in 2023.

Among the winners for H2 production, hydrogen storage, transportation and delivery include Air Liquide Advanced Technologies, a subsidiary of Air Liquide. That company will also provide a refuelling truck with a large capacity to contain liquid H2.

The Ecodrome consortium has also proposed to establish a supply station for both hydrogen refueling and electric recharging on airfields for use by electric passenger aircraft as well as hybrid land vehicles.

Geostock, an engineering group, specializes in storing energy underground and will develop solutions for large H2 storage in lined mined cavities. Hylandair will use its own hydrogen gas ecosystem for use on the air and the land side of the H2 HUB AIRPORT. Sakowin and Universal Hydrogen are also among the winners in this project.

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London Luton Airport Selects Veovo Revenue Management

London Luton Airport Selects Veovo Revenue Management to Automate Billing and Fuel Growth

Veovo, the technology company that is powering smart decision-making across airports globally, announced today that London Luton Airport (LLA) has selected Veovo’s Revenue Management solution. The software will automate the billing of the airport’s aeronautical revenue and support the flexible commercial deals needed to encourage traffic recovery.

With Veovo Revenue Management, LLA can fully automate the collation and processing of billing data in real-time. It will save the airport hours of work, reducing the cost to invoice, minimise errors, and improve the cash cycle time. Veovo’s flexible tariff structure also allows the airport to quickly innovate with incentive schemes to restore and expand routes and monetise all types of services.

As air traffic returns, finding ways to fuel revenue growth through greater billing efficiency and creating compelling carrier deals will be crucial to airports´ recovery. The complexity and manual effort to gather and process aeronautical billing data can cause invoicing delays, slowing revenue realisation – something LLA believes is no longer sustainable in the new travel future.

Kamal Patel, Head of IT at London Luton Airport, said: “To create a more resilient and agile airport business, we wanted to drive real change with our revenue management by removing complexity, while also creating opportunities to stand out from the competition with new creative tariff structures. We expect Veovo to play a big part in helping us achieve greater efficiencies and innovation to fuel our growth.”

James Williamson, Veovo CEO, said: “Forward-thinking airports like London Luton Airport are investing in revenue management technology now, despite the market conditions, to be ready for the future of travel with better outcomes for themselves, their airline partners and their customers. We’re thrilled to be chosen as their partner to help them achieve greater revenue assurance and growth at every stage of the recovery process.”

Veovo Revenue Management accommodates both Single and Multi-Airport organisations and is relied on by airports around the world including Hong Kong, Belfast International and Melbourne. It is available as a stand-alone module or an integrated component of the Veovo Intelligent Airport Platform. This AI-driven solution connects multi-modal passenger flow, airport management and revenue maximisation for smarter, end-to-end decision-making, efficient operations and brilliant customer journeys.

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EU members agree on Covid-19 passes for summer travel

European Union legislators and member countries found a compromise Thursday for launching COVID-19 certificates before the height of the summer holiday season, a move aimed at boosting travel and tourism following the restrictions of the coronavirus pandemic.

The various players managed to reconcile their differences during another round of discussions, paving the way for the trans-border travel passes to be introduced. Officials said the system should be up and running by July 1.

“This agreement is the first step to get the Schengen Area back on track,” European Parliament rapporteur Juan Fernando Lopez Aguilar said, referring to Europe’s passport-free travel zone. “It will make all the difference, and it won’t be repeating the nightmare of Summer 2020.”

The European Commission said the certificates will be issued in digital format and designed to be shown either on smartphones or paper. It guaranteed that “a very high level of data protection will be ensured.”

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Preparing aerodromes to manage disruption from drone incidents

Sarah Vanessa Poralla, Aerodrome Expert at the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and Dr.-Ing. Veit Voges, Senior Project Leader of Flight Ops Engineering at Zurich Airport, explore the threat posed by drones in the airport environment, and what can be done to prevent, mitigate and learn from them.

In the next five to 10 years, Europe will see the safe, secure and efficient integration of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) – also referred to as drones – into the airspace, where they will be operated alongside manned aircraft, such as in the airport environment. This necessitates the introduction of additional specific rules and procedures for UAS operations and the organisations involved in those operations, as well as a high degree of automation and digitalisation. This ‘U-space’ is a combination of U-space services, volumes of airspace and information exchange to support the air traffic management (ATM) of UAS and mitigate the risks of collision between the different UAS, as well as between UAS and manned aircraft in the shared U-space airspace.

In the next five to 10 years, Europe will see the safe, secure and efficient integration of Unmanned Aircraft Systems into the airspace, where they will be operated alongside manned aircraft”

The European Union (EU) has adopted common European rules that are applicable to drones and are found in Regulation (EU) 2019/947 on the rules and procedures for the operation of UAS, and Regulation (EU) 2019/945 on UAS and third-country operators of UAS. The rules aim to strike a balance between the opportunities offered by drones and the necessary obligations on drone manufacturers and operators, in terms of safety, respect for privacy, the environment, protection against noise and public security. The new rules ensure that drone operators – whether for recreational or professional use – will have a clear understanding of what is and is not allowed.

However, drones have evolved into a constant threat at airports in the last few years, and the defined rules cannot always prevent unintentional operations near aerodromes, nor obviously those for intentional or malicious purposes.

Zurich Airport (ZRH) is facing around two to three incidents per month where an unauthorised drone is seen, and a report is made to airport security or the police. While, fortunately, there has not been a major incident with long interruptions of traffic, other examples in Europe and worldwide highlight the constant threat due to drone sightings and the evolving situation – the major events at Madrid–Barajas Airport (MAD) and Frankfurt Airport (FRA) in February and March 2020, respectively, are some such examples. Additionally, after having to accommodate VIP movements and state aircraft during the annual World Economic Forum, which was hosted in Davos in January 2021, Zurich Airport requires a sensitive mindset with respect to possible drone incidents and needs to know how to counter them effectively. Each airport will have a certain attentiveness to this nowadays.

At the beginning of most drone events, one is not aware if the drone is operated by a pilot motivated by negligence, gross negligence or even criminal intent”

At the beginning of most drone events, one is not aware if the drone is operated by a pilot motivated by negligence, gross negligence or even criminal intent. While the motive may differ substantially, the response triggered by the aviation community at airports is often similar and can result in major consequences for its operations. Information might be scarce and difficult to verify. The location of the drone might be hard to determine. New contradictory reports could come in. Time is running fast to react.

This ambiguity about a situation is a challenging task which needs to be solved as soon as possible in order to avoid long airport disruptions, flight cancellations and delays or, in the worst case, prevent a mid-air collision between the drone and a departing or landing aircraft.

A drone incident can combine aviation safety and security aspects or morph from one to the other. For this reason, a holistic approach is needed, encompassing both safety and security considerations.

In practice, it is very challenging to identify a drone and even more difficult to ascertain the motivation and intent of the perpetrator/ offender behind the incident. For this reason, it is necessary to consider all drone incident offender categories in all scenarios, to be developed as part of the risk assessment. Furthermore, it must be ensured that different types of motivations are considered as a possibility in the threat assessment during an incident, based on all available information. In accordance with the overall objective, all relevant actors should respond appropriately and quickly to mitigate or even neutralise the developing threat.

The preparation of an airport’s drone incident management is a multi-layered set of measures and activities. The key to being the most effective, however, is to start out by forming a joint working group with all stakeholders”

The preparation of an airport’s drone incident management is a multi-layered set of measures and activities. The key to being the most effective, however, is to start out by forming a joint working group with all stakeholders, e.g. law enforcement, air operators, airport steering, air traffic control (ATC) etc. This ensures the best understanding of the issue, most likely reflects all relevant aspects and provides a robust decision-making process that is needed in time-critical situations during an incident.

Throughout 2020, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) worked with the Counter-UAS Task Force that it had formed to work on material to help aerodromes prepare for the misuse of drones in their surroundings. The task force combined expertise and knowledge from all relevant stakeholders – airports, air navigation service providers (ANSPs), air traffic control officers (ATCOs), air operators, DG HOME and DG MOVE, as well as law enforcement authorities – and provided an exceptional platform of interdisciplinary work to find effective solutions for the complex counter UAS problem.

Airports were represented in this group by Airports Council International (ACI) Europe and the member airports of AENA Spain, Frankfurt, Fraport Greece, Milan, Munich, Paris/ Groupe ADP and Zurich to provide first-hand industry experience and specific airport examples in the discussion.

The work results were compiled in a manual separated in three parts:

  • Part 1: Drone Incident Management at Aerodromes – the challenge of unauthorised drones in the surroundings of aerodromes
  • Part 2: Drone Incident Management at Aerodromes – guidance and recommendations
  • Part 3: Drone Incident Management at Aerodromes – resources and practical tools.

Only Part 1 is publicly available on the EASA website. The full manual, containing all three parts, can be obtained upon request by aviation actors, law enforcement and national civil aviation authorities by contacting EASA.

While there will be no ‘silver bullet’ solution for all airports, the group has defined a process outline and threat zones in a generic way, which will be useful at multiple locations, to be reflected upon and used as a recommendation. The work provides guidance on how to develop appropriate arrangements and procedures which support an incident response that is quick, effective and proportionate. In this way, air traffic suspensions or airspace or runway closures may be avoided or kept to a minimum, and airport closure would remain a last resort. 

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