SITA announced today that Lufthansa is the first airline in the world to achieve common use passenger processing systems (CUPPS) compliance following pilot testing at Orlando International Airport with SITA, which is the only compliance testing entity (CTE) presently available to airlines wishing to become early adopters of the breakthrough new industry standard.
Catherine Mayer, SITA vice-president for airport solutions, said: “The successful use of CUPPS technology by Lufthansa on transatlantic flights this month is a major milestone for the delivery of this new technology to the air transport industry. It has taken us four years of research and development to get this far but Lufthansa’s pilot tests for flight preparation out of Orlando International Airport are welcome news in the run-up to the release by IATA of the CUPPS technical specifications in November this year.”
“We have shown at Orlando that our systems can run multiple applications according to the CUPPS standards. SITA’s AirportConnect Open remains the only fully-integrated common use platform supporting CUPPS, CUTE, and browser-based applications, as well as CUSS kiosk applications.”
Kaspar Pfeifer, vice-president for production processes, Lufthansa Information Management, said: “Lufthansa is proud to be the first airline capable of bringing this new standard to the market. The Lufthansa CUPPS Integration Platform (LH CIP) developed by Lufthansa Systems enables its full suite of passenger processing applications including check-in, boarding, weight and balance and other applications for operations and flight preparation to run successfully on the SITA CUPPS platform in Orlando.”
Pfeifer added: “We used CUPPS to handle and prepare a transatlantic flight for the first time on September 2 when we boarded over 220 passengers on LH 465 for an on-time departure. We are ready now to introduce CUPPS at any airport once IATA officially releases the CUPPS technical specifications in November 2009.”
Thomas Jeske, the responsible project manager at Lufthansa Information Management, added that feedback from Lufthansa’s staff in Orlando was very positive. Check-in agents welcomed the increased speed of the application and printing using the CUPPS platform. “All CUPPS-compliant applications on the CUPPS-compliant platform have been working flawlessly,” he reported.
Last month, SITA became the first platform provider to achieve CUPPS compliance and to successfully complete the requirements for the CUPPS pilot program. SITA is currently the only CTE approved to test airlines’ applications before they can be put into operation on the CUPPS platform.
The CUPPS technology, which replaces the common use terminal equipment (CUTE) standard developed by SITA 25 years ago, will make a significant difference to airlines as it saves them from having to develop separate applications to work with different platforms, thereby resulting in significant cost savings.
Jeske said: “The pilot tests with SITA and Orlando International Airport helped to prove the concept, achieving interoperability and compatibility between the SITA CUPPS platform and Lufthansa’s CUPPS applications. This is a very significant development for common-use systems throughout the air transport industry.”
As the only CUPPS CTE, SITA is currently working with several airlines to test their applications to ensure CUPPS readiness.