The Addis Ababa Bole International Airport (ADD) is one of the busiest airports in East Africa and the main operating hub for national carrier, Ethiopian Airlines. The airport, operated by Ethiopian Airports Enterprise (EAE), was facing severe aircraft congestion at fourteen remote stands due to limited apron space and difficult manual guiding conditions during peak hours. In an open bid, EAE decided to bring ADB SAFEGATE on board to implement its Safedock Advanced Visual Docking Guidance Systems (A-VDGS) to allow safe and smooth operations within the apron area.
"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.
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," said Getaneh Adera Nigussie, Director Airport Facilities Ethiopian Airport Enterprise.
EAE appointed ADB SAFEGATE to deploy its Safedock A-VDGS and control system to enable automated aircraft parking. As part of the turnkey deployment, ADB SAFEGATE provided the masts, cabling and installation of the A-VDGS at the fourteen stands. Together with the control system, the automated solution reduces congestion caused by aircraft waiting to pull into occupied or unstaffed gates and eliminates delays that occur when marshallers are unavailable.
The system further improves efficiency by reducing taxi-in times and shortening turnaround times. Safedock A-VDGS ensure safe parking in tight spaces by verifying aircraft/gate compatibility and preventing parking of incompatible aircraft at adjacent gates to avoid the risk of wing-tip collisions.
"Our vision has always been to deliver a safe and efficient gate operation for airports and their airline partners. Bole International Airport is an important hub for East Africa. With the installation of Safedock A-VDGS and our control system, we have been successful in automating apron operations to make the aircraft parking and turnaround process safer and more efficient for EAE’s leading customer, Ethiopian Airlines, thereby improving overall airport performance," said Christian Onselaere, CEO, ADB SAFEGATE.