ADB Safegate has installed its Safedock advanced visual docking guidance systems (A-VDGS) at the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport (ADD) in Ethiopia to reduce congestion and enable smooth aircraft operations within the apron area.

With the installation, the company has implemented its first A-VDGS solution in Africa that will help the airport automate its apron operations in order to facilitate improved and safe aircraft ground movement.

ADD, which is operated by Ethiopian Airports Enterprise (EAE), selected the solution as it was facing serious aircraft congestion at 14 remote stands owing to limited apron space and difficult manual guiding conditions during peak hours.

EAE Airport Facilities director Getaneh Adera Nigussie said: “Ethiopian Airlines is one of our busiest airlines at the airport that operates many international routes.

"Manual parking at remote stands was causing flight delays, especially during peak hours, and was increasingly becoming a risk Ethiopian Airlines refused to take."

“Manual parking at remote stands was causing flight delays, especially during peak hours, and was increasingly becoming a risk Ethiopian Airlines refused to take. There was an urgent need to transform the current manual processes at the remote stands.

“ADB Safegate had been a long-standing partner, providing us airfield lighting solutions in the past, therefore it was only natural for us to turn to them for this key project.”

The incorporation of the new Safedock A-VDGS and control system will facilitate automated aircraft parking that will help reduce congestion caused by aircraft waiting to park into occupied or unstaffed gates, as well as reduce delays that occur when marshallers are unavailable.

In addition, the solution helps reduce taxi-in and turnaround times, ensures safe parking in tight spaces by verifying aircraft / gate compatibility, and prohibits incompatible aircraft parking at adjacent gates to avoid the risk of wing-tip collisions.

Besides installing the A-VDGS solution at the 14 stands, the company has provided the masts and cabling as part of the project.