Solutions in the airport
Airports are a part of all major (and now not so major) cities. Every year, millions of people pass through the gates of Hamad International Airport. Over the course of the past century, commercial flights and air travel have been democratized and adapted for the average consumer, while their cost has been, in many ways, reduced. This led to the flourishing of the tourism industry and, logically, to a higher demand on civil aviation.
While a common traveler may take the airport structure and conveniences for granted – largely thanks to this accessibility – it is important to remember that the air hubs have been equipped with a plethora of technological systems that help render travel safe, quick, and pleasant.
Communication and passenger operations
Missing a flight or a gate number is a bad idea. Fortunately, with enough attention and a sufficient time baggage, it is almost impossible nowadays, thanks to the advanced information display systems. The inner signage of the airport is omnipresent, accessible, and easy to read.
And in case one is late to their flight, advanced check-in, passenger tacking and counting systems have the travelers’ backs.
In very rare and unlikely occurrences, certain scenarios may temper with a smooth ground-to-flight transition. If ever an emergency, such as a fire, takes place on the airport grounds, its infrastructure will help alert and evacuate all the passengers and staff in due time. This is done through fire alarm and suppression systems, such as FAS and FM200.
Runway and flight solutions
Communication must be maintained not only inside the airport, but between airplanes and operators. All aircrafts should arrive on the time, air traffic must be managed, and landing and takeoff must be carried out as smoothly as possible. A timely transfer is an essential component for all these operations.
Therefore, modern airports use an entire array of solutions, such as clear runway signage, RADAR and radio-based equipment to communicate with the arriving and departing planes, as well as to give the latter clear indications about the directions they are to take.
But good communication alone isn’t enough to ensure the safe and steady passage of the flight. Meteorological and environmental conditions could impact landing and takeoff. Birds that could get in the way need to be chased off, while weather control solutions could be used to modify precipitation to a certain extent. The presence of debris may also affect clearance for airplanes. Therefore, Foreign Object and Detection systems for Runways such as Xsight have been put in place in airports, including HIA. This infrastructure helps promptly detect the location of a foreign object in question, while also alerting and archiving the data about its presence in its subsystems. The coverage of the infrastructure extends to all taxiways and runways, allowing for a much more comprehensive analysis of the plane’s on-ground and aerial environment.
It is also important to keep in mind that every year, new and updated technology appears on the market. With each innovation, each optimization, the functioning of the airport improves. Equipment such as advanced baggage handling has been an excellent helper in reducing baggage loss during transfer.
The digitalization of our daily activities has also left its mark on the airport handling, as, nowadays, it is possible to check in online, avoiding the stress and boredom of waiting in long lines. Some other new technologies have specifically been designed to answer the challenges of the big changes in global trends. The coronavirus pandemic, for one, had an immense impact to the traditional travel guidelines. Airports around the world required their passengers and staff to have a certain body temperature and no symptoms of the Covid-19 infection. A solution to this issue has been brought in the form of body-scan cameras, scattered around airports, such as the ones in Qatar International Airport. This modern equipment allowed for precise and rapid body temperature measurements. Even outside of the pandemic context, body scan cameras are a welcome and needed addition to the airport arsenal, as they may help detect dangerously high temperatures on time, potentially saving lives.
If you are a fan of the multiverse and the AI, this next solution may be your favorite! Currently, augmented reality (AR) equipment is being developed for airport use, and no, it isn’t about chasing Pokémon. AR is thought to help travelers navigate the air hubs – especially those on a larger scale – with more ease. The computer-generated directions and tips that one will see in their respective equipment will be tied to their preferences and needs and could save a lot of time when finding restrooms or a sought gate.
These solutions by no means resume the entire range of what has already integrated and what is being developed for the air hubs. One thing is for sure: these systems are an immense help to the travelers and the airport staff.
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