There’s something in the air. Many of us have noticed a quiet, subtle, cautious sense of optimism in the aviation sector. It’s been growing. The rise of the Omicron variant threatened to set things back again, and there those of us that have been waiting for it to ruin things – well, that hasn’t really happened.

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It seems that vaccination programmes have done their job, and although the newest variant is spreading, it’s more manageable than the original Covid-19 outbreak – provided, of course, that we keep up with vaccination, boosting, and testing. The mood has been buoyed in the UK particularly, with the recent announcement that travel restrictions will be reduced.

That being said, the aviation sector needs to remain vigilant. It should be ­– and is – continuing to implement the new processes and technologies that we’ve seen over the last two years. I suppose the silver lining for those of us who are fascinated by new technology is that there has been a tangible ramp in innovation and implementation.

This issue is packed with new developments. We speak to the founder of Engineered Arts about the future of robots in airports, and we learn how AI can improve airport security and track flight delays before they’ve been reported. And, in our cover story, we look at the benefits of remote air traffic control systems and why they’re becoming more prevalent.

In addition to all of this, we speak to SITA to learn about the important messages from its new aviation industry report, and profile BOOM, a new US-based company hoping to bring back supersonic passenger flights.

For this, and more, read on. Don’t forget to follow us @Airport_Mag and let us know your thoughts on this issue.

Peter Nilson, editor

In this issue

Remote working: the benefits of remote ATC

London City Airport attests to the effectiveness of remote air traffic control towers, having integrated them in 2021. Jasleen Mann finds out how they work and investigates their benefits.

Improving airport security with AI technology

Technology company Pangiam recently announced that its AI technology is to be trialled at Southampton Airport to improve security. Frankie Youd speaks to Alexis Long, chief strategy officer, and Ha McNeill, chief executive officer at Pangiam, to find out about the project.

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Read all about it: SITA’s aviation industry report

SITA has carried out a report highlighting the key areas of focus for the aviation industry this year. Frankie Youd talks to Sergio Colella, Europe president for SITA, about how the pandemic has impacted the shift to digital in aviation.

A new boom for supersonic aviation

From bullet trains to HS2, speed has become a key talking point for the travel industry, as companies implement innovative technology and designs to cut down journey time. The aviation industry is now joining the speed race with the self-proclaimed fastest and most sustainable supersonic airliner. Frankie Youd investigates.

Predicting flight delays using AI

Across the globe airlines and airports are frequently subjected to delays caused by plane pushback approval, bird strikes, weather conditions and much more, which if not reported in time can result in angry passengers and complications. Start-up UnDelay has developed a solution to this issue with the help of AI. Frankie Youd finds out more.

Next issue preview

Launching as a world first, a fleet of fully autonomous delivery robots has been dispatched at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.

Named ‘Ottobots’, the robots provide passengers with the ability to complete contactless orders for food and retail within the airport. After delivery, customers also receive status updates on their phones via a QR code, which is then scanned by the robot’s camera to secure delivery. 

We speak to the company behind the robot’s design to find out more about the autonomous functions, the benefits they bring to the airport and more.

In the meantime, you can follow us @Airport_Mag to keep up to date with all the latest news.

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