The baggage handling system (BHS) of logistics automation company Vanderlande has gone live at China’s Qingdao Jiaodong International Airport (TAO).

This project, which commenced in 2016 and involved many international teams of the company, was spearheaded by Vanderlande China.

Linked by more than 16km of conveyors, the system extends from 12m underground to 12.8m above ground at the airport’s check-in area.

Vanderlande’s BHS encompasses numerous check-in islands where bags are screened and moved to one of three HELIXORTER tilt-tray sorters and on 19 flight make-up carousels.

Here, two units of Vanderlande’s loading aid solution, STACK@EASE, have been incorporated to streamline baggage loading.

Additionally, the system features an inbound system with 18 arrival lines and 14 reclaim carousels, along with a lane-based BAGSTORE storage centre with a capacity of 1,500 bags.

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It has the ability to manage 15,000 bags per hour, nearly threefold the capacity of the former terminal at the old Qingdao Liuting Airport, which has been shut now.

The repositioning of the activities from the old to the new airport was carried out overnight.

Vanderlande provided training to the customer’s operations team through operational and maintenance training programmes to enable a smooth transfer.

Furthermore, several tests and simulation drills were conducted during the last two years before the transfer.

Vanderlande China executive managing director Doney Xu said: “The Qingdao project truly reflects the consistent, high-quality service that Vanderlande provides to its customers, and we are well-positioned to support the airport’s operations and future expansion plan. We’re looking forward to being part of the airport’s future success.”

TAO officially opened in east China’s Shandong Province in August this year.

The airport’s new 500,000m² terminal is anticipated to manage more than 35 million passengers annually.

TAO has been built to handle large aircrafts such as the Airbus A380 and is ranked as 4F.

In March, Vanderlande expanded its passenger checkpoint solutions portfolio with the introduction of the automated screening lane (ASL) PAX Compact.