Japanese technology firm NEC and IT technology firm SITA have partnered to develop solutions to enable a secure travel experience at airports around the world.

The partnership will leverage NEC’s I:Delight identity management platform along with SITA Smart Path and SITA Flex.

The partnership comes at a time when airports and airlines are exploring options to ensure low-touch and automated passenger processing to adhere to safety requirements amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Passengers will be able to use their digital identity on mobile phones at each step of travel. They will be able to check-in, make payments, drop their baggage and pass through security, immigration and boarding using biometric identity by scanning their face.

By deploying identification technologies and AI solutions such as the face recognition algorithm, the I:Delight platform will permit passengers to be identified faster and more accurately.

SITA Smart Path and SITA Flex solutions can integrate NEC’s mobile and biometric technologies with the current common-use infrastructure and airline applications.

NEC Corporation of America chief experience officer and NEC Global Aviation Center of Excellence head Raffie Beroukhim said: “We look forward to this partnership with SITA and the opportunity to develop and implement the most advanced platforms at airports throughout the world, thereby contributing to the digitisation of the airline industry and making travel safer and more enjoyable.”

SITA CEO Barbara Dalibard added: “In NEC we have another strong partner where together we are able to deliver to our airline and airport customers a more seamless, automated journey through the airport.

“We know that passengers value the benefit of a truly self-service experience. Leveraging SITA’s common-use footprint in more than 460 airports globally and NEC’s award-winning identity management technology, we are well placed to help our customers deliver a truly unique and efficient experience in the airport, particularly during these challenging times where there is increased focus on the health and safety of passengers.”

Recently, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) selected NEC and its partner Infrared Cameras to provide facial recognition and thermal temperature screening technology to its public airports.