Yet again, atg airports lives up to its reputation for delivering creative yet practical solutions to complex airport and airfield challenges, with the development of a unique swipe-card system to provide unprecedented levels of aircraft safety management on airside stands throughout Manchester Airport.

Designed and developed in-house by the leading manufacturer of airfield solutions and in conjunction with Manchester Airport, the safety interlock units are now installed at the head of a number of aircraft stands at Manchester. Working in unison with atg airports’ visual docking guidance system (VDGS) control system, they help overcome any risk of collision with ground-handling equipment or an aerobridge when aircraft are parking at a stand.

Interfacing with the existing building management system used as part of the fixed electrical ground-power installation, the new swipe-card units are activated by ground-handling agents who carry out an inspection for any obstructions on the stand prior to arrival of the aircraft. The atg system uses the signal from the swipe card to interface with the existing atg airports VDGS control system, indicating that the stand has been correctly inspected by the agent and is accepted as safe and ready for the aircraft.

Only when the stand has been accepted as safe will the docking guidance system on the respective stand be activated. In the unlikely event of a fault within the swipe card unit, a fault indicator will automatically be displayed.

Commenting on this innovative and unique development, atg airports’ managing director, Antonio Garrido, said: “The design concept of using a swipe-card unit is simple yet extremely effective and provides a cost-effective solution to a potentially hazardous problem.”

Antonio added: “atg airports is a solutions-orientated full service provider and this project is further testimony to our design and manufacturing capabilities in providing bespoke and practical airfield solutions. We are delighted to have collaborated in such a successful way with one of the leading and most respected airports in the world.”