Qatar’s Hamad International Airport (HIA) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with global IT provider SITA to jointly trial and improve passenger processing solutions at the airport.
The deal supports the airport’s initiative to roll out seamless identity management solutions using biometrics across all major passenger service points.
The two partners will carry out trials to evaluate the effectiveness of robots for passenger facilitation, blockchain technology for rapid and secure sharing of data across stakeholders, and the potential use of augmented and virtual reality for operational concepts.
HIA chief operating officer Mohammed Al Meer said: “The use of biometrics as the only verification required at each passenger touch point along the airport journey will go a long way in improving the flow of passengers, providing a better travel experience as well as greater operational visibility for the stakeholders.
“SITA has already demonstrated excellent capability and agility in pioneering and optimising biometric exit checks for the boarding process at HIA. We believe that such joint efforts will contribute to digital transformations across the air transport industry.”
Under the terms of the agreement, SITA will be responsible for delivering and installing 62 units of its advanced common-use check-in kiosks with bag tag printing capabilities.
The check-in kiosks are expected to help improve self-service check-in services for passengers at HIA.
The company will also deploy boarding pass verification e-gates which will be located before the departures’ border control.
In addition to the kiosks and e-gates, all other systems that are being acquired and upgraded by the airport for passenger processing will be integrated with biometric sensors.
The technology will not only help identify passengers easily and quickly, but will also ensure improved security oversight and provide smooth end-to-end journeys through the airport using a single biometric token.
During 2016, SITA and HIA conducted their first tests of biometric exit checks.