Woolpert contracted to assist with planning new terminal at Pago Pago

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Architecture, engineering and consultancy firm, Woolpert, has been appointed to evaluate, plan and design a new airport terminal at Pago Pago International Airport in Samoa. The airport serves the seven South Pacific islands of the US territory.

The existing facility was built more than 50 years ago and has been expanded multiple times to accommodate growing passenger traffic and the needs of the region. The existing terminal has limits due to regional geography.

“The current facility does not adequately support new aircraft or economic development plans for American Samoa, which is actively expanding infrastructure, industrial, commercial and business opportunities,” said Curtis Brown, Senior Project Manager and Senior Associate¬† at Woolpert. “We have been working with the American Samoa government over the last few years, reconstructing and extending runways and we truly appreciate their culture and values, as well as their needs and vast potential.”

Evaluation for the new terminal is already underway with Woolpert employing the VLX mobile mapping building scanner as part of its reality capture for the existing structure and utilities to produce precise drawings, which will then be used to assess what can be retained and what needs to be rebuilt.

The project will be funded using local, federal and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) sources. It will be environmentally and economically conscious, incorporating sustainable materials and climate resilience practices, while improving services that support disenfranchised communities.

Woolpert has also partnered with airport architecture firm, Corgan and local engineering consultancy firm PPG Consultants on this project.

Edinburgh Airport explores potential for untapped wind energy

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As part of a trial with green energy company Katrick Technologies Edinburgh Airport is exploring the potential of untapped wind energy across its campus.

The trial will see several wind mapping sensors being installed across the airport’s site – including on the roof and around the runway – to examine areas of unexploited low-level wind power.

The sensors will collect data that will identify the optimal areas to capture and convert energy. Wind panels can then be installed to take advantage of this currently untapped renewable power source.

“As an airport we are always looking to embrace fresh ideas, particularly when it comes to the generation of green energy and this technology has the potential to provide new opportunities around this,” said Danny Quinn, Technical Asset Director at Edinburgh Airport.

“When installed, these sensors have the ability to identify untapped sources of wind energy across our campus, giving us the potential to become more efficient in the way we run.”

Vijay Madlani, Co-CEO of Katrick Technologies added: “Traditional wind turbines simply aren’t feasible for airport estates.

“The goal of our partnership with Edinburgh Airport is to provide them access to previously untapped areas of energy through our wind panels. In addition to their scalable and flexible location applications, the panels are designed to work as B3 noise barriers, meaning they offer highways and airports a noise mitigation solution. Additionally, we have created multiple designs which can complement various environmental settings,” he concluded.

Asheville Regional Airport all set for modernisation programme

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Greater Asheville Regional Airport Authority (GARAA) has awarded Parsons Corporation with a five-year contract to oversee the modernisation and expansion programme of Asheville Regional Airport in North Carolina. Parsons will be tasked with evaluating, developing and managing the new $240m terminal.

The terminal is being upgraded and expanded to accommodate the growing number of passengers and enhance the customer experience. The new 275,000 sq. ft. terminal will feature 12 passenger boarding gates to replace the existing seven gate 115,000 sq. ft. terminal.

Lew Bleiweis, President and CEO of GARAA said: “This is the most significant and complex construction project we have ever taken on. It is imperative that we have the right programme management professionals on board as an extension of our team. We are pleased to welcome Parsons to this exciting project.”

Bleiweis was joined by Peter Torrellas, President, connected communities for Parsons, who acknowledged that “airports are vital connectors that stimulate economic growth and mobility.”

He added that for decades, “Parsons’ aviation experts have been reimagining air travel and successfully optimising airport project deliveries around the world. We look forward to helping GARAA deliver a world-class passenger experience, and meet the long-term mobility needs of the Asheville region.”

The replacement of the existing terminal will require extensive phasing and stakeholder coordination to maintain airport operations. Parsons will help ensure the project meets construction schedule and budget requirements while leveraging its digital transformation and aviation service capabilities to deliver program management information system (PMIS) support.

A new ticket lobby, concourse and areas for TSA screening, baggage claim and new amenities such as expanded retail/ food and beverage concessions, breastfeeding rooms, powered seating, art displays and updated passenger boarding bridges are all part of the upgraded terminal plans.

Aviation stakeholders collaborate to achieve 100% SAF-powered flight

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Marking a milestone in aviation’s lower carbon journey, regional aircraft manufacturer ATR, Swedish airline Braathens Regional Airlines and sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) supplier Neste collaborated to enable the first ever 100% SAF-powered test flight on a commercial regional aircraft. The fuel was uplifted at Malmo Airport in Sweden before the aircraft flew to Bromma in southern Sweden near Stockholm.

The historic flight, which took place on Tuesday 21 June, 2022 and lasted around 1 hour and 20 minutes, is part of the 100% SAF certification process of ATR aircraft that began in September 2021 in cooperation with Braathens and Neste and which is expected to be complete by 2025. While various ground and flight tests have taken place on the ATR 72-600 prototype aircraft, Tuesday marked the first time a flight was conducted with 100% SAF in two engines.

Describing it as a “historic day for aviation,” ATR CEO Stefano Bortoli added: “After more than a century of commercial flights powered by kerosene, we are at the dawn of a new era. In recent months, we carried out a series of successful flights with SAF in one engine. We now decided it was time to perform the first test flight with 100% SAF in both engines. This helps us to certify our aircraft to fly solely on SAF faster and to enable more sustainable connections as a result. The flight represents a true milestone for the entire aviation industry as it shows that this technology works and can be promptly adopted by many in our industry to speed up the transition to low-emission aviation.”

Meanwhile, Johnathan Wood, Neste’s Vice President Europe Renewable Aviation noted that SAF is key to achieving aviation’s emission reduction goals. “When used in neat form, at 100% concentration as on this test flight, Neste MY SAF redues greenhouse gas emissions over its lifecycle by up to 80% compared to fossil jet fuel use, and provides additionally non-CO2 benefits through significantly reduced particulate emissions, among others. As a drop-in fuel, it can be used in existing aircraft engines and is compatible with current airport fuel infrastructure. Test flights like this show it is possible to safely fly on 100% SAF and help accelerate the adoption of SAF in aviation.”

Pratt & Whitney worked closely with ATR and Braathens to prepare for the milestone flight with Maria Della Costa, President of Pratt & Whitney Canada saying: “This milestone affirms the opportunity that SAF plays in the aviation industry and is indicative of the strong commitment Pratt & Whitney has made to powering more sustainable aviation.”

The flight also underline that speeding up the transition to net-zero carbon emissions can only be achieved when all stakeholders within aviation work closely together.


WATM: Al Ula Airport to become first Middle East hub to deploy remote tower technology

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Technological engineering company, Indra, and Saudi Air Navigation Services (SANS) have agreed to develop and operate the first virtual control tower to enter service in the Middle East at Al Ula International Airport.

The two companies will lead the introduction of this revolutionary technology into a region with a large number of medium-sized airports that will benefit from its use, as they will be able to conduct all their management from a single virtual tower to reduce operating costs and increase the frequency of flights.

Following the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), SANS CEO Abdulaziz bin Salem Al Zaid underlined his confidence that “this project will constitute a qualitative leap for the navigation services provided by SANS and enhance its position as one of the operators that manages its airspace in accordance with the most demanding international safety and quality standards.”

Indra’s Director of ATM Operations, Javier Ruano, added: “We’re redoubling our efforts to make the Saudi service provider one of the world’s leaders in air traffic management and equip the country with the most advanced infrastructure. Indra and SANS have once again demonstrated their commitment to ongoing innovation and the incorporation of the next-generation digital technologies that will shape the future of the sector.”

PTEParis: Vitra develops seating specifically for public spaces

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Vitra, the seating company, has launched its Soft Wait seating solution, which has been developed specifically for public spaces.

According to Pascal Berberat, Head of Airport Division at Vitra, airport furniture is subject to heavy use, so it has to be durable, adaptable and aesthetically pleasing.

“Finding that balance of the conflicting requirements between the airport operator and the passenger is challenging,” he said. “The key to good design is recognising the need to solve a problem and then provide a solution to that problem,” he added, explaining that all too often seating which is used elsewhere is then used in an airport setting where it simply doesn’t last. Vitra however designs its seating specifically to fit an airport or other public space’s stringent requirements.

Designed by Vitra and designers Edward Barber and Jay Osgerby, the sofa-style system combines comfort and ergonomic seating that is suitable for heavy use and the exacting demands of the airport environment.

Each detail has been designed to be durable, easy to clean and simple to maintain, while the modular design allows for multiple configurations which can be modified and expanded on at a later date. It can be assembled into linear and curved formations, ensuring effective use of any awkwardly shaped interiors or dead spaces, for example around pillars.

In addition, the individual modules are equipped with power and data connections, and the metal parts – legs and armrests come in a polished or black powder-coated finish. Tables can be positioned between seats or at the end of benches.

PTEParis: Kusch+Co showcases stylish seating solution in the French capital

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With passenger traffic on the rise, airports are turning their attention to airport seating with seating manufacturers leveraging this growth at this year’s Passenger Terminal Expo.

Kusch+Co is showcasing its latest solution – Creva soft – at this year’s show. The seating solution has already been deployed at Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt Airport in Germany, where it offers a multitude of distinct variations and options, according to the seating manufacturer.

Creva Soft is aligned with the rise in mobile working, allowing passengers to optimise their time at the airport by keeping up with work commitments. Featuring a comfortable armchair style seat with high back and textured walls, as well as a table top, passengers can catch up on work or talk on the phone undisturbed. USB ports and integrated sockets enable customers to charge their electronic devices.

Arconas unveils Avro as a seating ecosystem built for the future

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Manufacturer and distributor of airport furniture, Arconas, has launched Avro, as a complete, high-performance seating ecosystem built for the future.

The seating solution provides operators with a flexible seating system for all types of travellers and combines visionary engineering and integrated power with an elegant design. Avro elevates any interior space and brings the VIP lounge experience to any waiting area with one single, easy-to-install system. The universal beam structure allows all seat types to be easily installed, removed or replaced, making Avro simple to maintain, clean and reconfigure as needs change.

Describing Avro as the most “versatile airport furniture ecosystem on the market today,” Lynn Gordon, Arconas’ VP of Business Development, added: “Our patented universal connector is engineered to accommodate Avro’s entire extended family of seating, including tandem, hospitality lounge, and upholstered recliners, as well as benches, tables and accessories.”

Avro incorporates low-voltage USA-A and USB-C outlets in the armrests to passengers can charge their devices or catch up on work while in the airport. The patented, retrofittable outlets ensure ease-of-maintenance, while future-proofing the power supply as technology evolves.

Avro partnered with London-based design studio Pearson Lloyd on its latest seating solution. Tom Lloyd, Principal at Pearson Lloyd commented: “Avro’s elegant aesthetic elevates airport design and enriches the passenger experience. Circular design is an essential part of Avro. We wanted to address the three users in the room – the operator, the user and the planet.”

Crafted from recyclable aluminium, all Avro’s structural components are designed to be easily replaceable to minimise waste and maximise Avro’s lifespan. Seating shells are stackable for efficient and economical shipping, while the fully demountable system is engineered for easy onsite assembly, ensuring Avro carbon emissions are the lowest they can possibly be. At the end of its useful life, post-consumer polypropylene shells can be repurposed to create clothing and industrial fibres, containers, storage racks and other items.

Veovo touches down at Lehigh Valley Airport in Pennsylvania

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Pennsylvania’s Lehigh-Northampton Airport Authority (LNAA) has adopted Veovo’s Passenger Predictability solution to ensure a smooth Transportation Security Administration (TSA) experience and enhance passenger flow at Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE).

In May 2021, the LNAAA joined federal state and local officials to celebrate the start of the construction of a new Security Checkpoint/ Terminal Connector. The partnership between LNAA and Veovo will enable the airport to receive detailed passenger movement insights at TSA security lines, as well as share real-time information with passengers, improve resource planning and efficiently handle increased passenger volumes.

“We gain critical insight on passenger flow at our facility, which we share on a multitude of communication platforms,” said Glenn Kurcon, Director of Information Systems and Technology, LNAA. “Also it can be used as a reconnaissance tool for your itinerary. For example, if you are departing on a Sunday morning flight, passengers can check the week before to see estimated wait times in their travel window.”

Veovo’s Passenger Predictability solution combines 3D cameras and powerful cloud analytics software to provide key performance indicators, including occupancy, throughput and wait times. The predicted wait times can be presented to travellers on the airport’s website, social media channels and on digital displays at the TSA security entrance.

Meanwhile, VEOVO CEO, James Williamson, said that as travellers return to the skies, “we see that airports of all sizes are switching on to the power of real data and predictive insight to automate planning, improve real-time decision-making and deliver exceptional passenger experiences.”

Thomas Stoudt, Executive Director at LNAA, concluded that Veovo’s system will “ensure ABE maintains a competitive edge while delivering the LNAA’s vision of being the best regional airport system in North America.”

Missoula Montana Airport partners with View Smart Windows

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Missoula Montana Airport (MSO) has partnered with View Smart Windows to improve energy efficiency and the passenger experience.

The windows have been installed in the airport’s South Concourse Terminal, which is currently undergoing an expansion project due for completion in early June, 2022. View Smart Windows are a key component of the airport’s expansion project, which aims to lower the airport’s carbon footprint and establish the regional hub as a flagship airport.

The windows use artificial intelligence to automatically adjust in response to outdoor conditions, providing continuous views of the surrounding Missoula Valley and Northern Rockies, while blocking heat and glare to optimise passenger comfort and reduce energy consumption from lighting and HVAC as much as 20%.

Depute Director, Tim Damrow, commented,” MSO is the gateway to Western Montana, and we wanted the new terminal to showcase the region’s spectacular natural beauty.” He noted that the windows help deliver a truly state-of-the-art facility that is energy-efficient and enclosed in floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning views.

A study on natural light and the airport experience found that passengers who boarded at gates with View Smart Windows were 68% more likely to report a higher satisfaction rate and rated the airport as 33% more modern, efficient, bright and comfortable.

“MSO recognises that the airport’s of the future will be designed to measurably enhance the passenger experience and improve facility operations,” said Kristi Crase, Strategy Director, Aviation at View. “Airports across the country are rapidly adopting View’s smart building technology, and we are thrilled to partner with MSO to transform Western Montana’s biggest airport into a destination in itself.”

MSO joins a growing list of airports throughout the country that have installed View Smart Windows. Other air transport hubs with similar windows include Bostan Logan, San Francisco, New York LaGuardia, Dallas Fort Worth, Charlotte Douglas, Chicago O’Hare, Phoenix Sky Harbor , Seattle-Tacoma, Memphis International, Spokane airports and Bozeman Yellowstone airports.