This year the annual Passenger Terminal Expo was held in London at the Excel Exhibition Centre over the 26th, 27th and 28th March. PTE 2019 set an attendance record, with over 10,000 delegates from more than 1,500 organisations and 130 countries visiting, as well as over 350 specialist airport technology suppliers.
Seen as the world’s leading international airport event, PTE reflected some of the major trends coming on stream under the theme of ‘Smart Airports’. The Conference Programme highlighted the big trends affecting the future, including:
- Airport Cities and Transport Connections,
- Airport Design, Planning and Development,
- Aviation Security and Border Control,
- Commercial Development and Customer Experience,
- Environment and Sustainability,
- Future Airports and Technology,
- Management and Operations,
- The Passenger Journey,
- And Increasing Airport Capacity.
The AiQ team saw consistent footfall throughout the three days at our stand, which showcased our work with NATS at Bristol Airport, as well as our innovative VR simulations and other projects. Visitors were able to walk through London Heathrow T3 Check In and Bristol Airport Check In in real time, immersed in our realistic graphics.
Our Bristol Airport case study illustrated the end to end assessment of the airport we completed with NATS in 2018. This was a capacity model from Terminal Kerbside, through Check In, Security, the Departures Lounges, Stands, GSE, Apron Runway and through to Airspace. The work modelled the current 8mppa in high quality virtual reality and gave projection for 10mppa up to 15mppa. It showed where the pinch points would be in the airports’ expansion plans, laying out a clear signposting for the Bristol Airport team to follow.
We were also able to meet with a number of our current airport clients at the show, including London Heathrow, Bristol, Leeds Bradford and London Southend. We discussed other key projects for the AiQ team this last year, such as undertaking an independent assessment of Operational Capacity at Schiphol Airport and the recent announcement of our three-year Framework Agreement with HAL for the annual maintenance of Airside Traffic Simulations, Ground Service Equipment (GSE) & Unit Load Device (ULD) models for Airside Operations at Heathrow Airport, alongside other projects at Budapest, Narita and much more.
PTE also gave us the opportunity to talk to a wide range of equipment suppliers now actively implementing new technologies like Self-Serve Bag drop, Common Use Terminal Equipment (CUTE), Facial Recognition and Automation. We have a number of opportunities to work with these companies at the early stage of their planning to model how the new systems will be work in practice. With our experience and capabilities we can explore issues such as queue timings, space layout, the mix of existing systems vs new systems, issues for ORAT and much more, before implementation takes place.
On Wednesday we were able to attend the Urban Turbine Project Session, listening with interest to the work going on to set out the airport of the future. As supporting partners, looking at a seamless experience and better integration for airports, we were pleased to hear more about the project. Read more about the fascinating approach of Henrik Roth’s Urban Turbine project on page 84 of Passenger Terminal World Magazine.
Overall the show had a breath-taking amount of new technology and automation that will transform the Passenger Terminal of the future. Thought leaders from around the world were in one place in London for three days in March. We look forward to more collaboration and innovation in Paris next year!