Genetec’s badging solution enhances airport employee background checks

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To assist with meeting the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) stringent regulations required to verify the credentials of airport employees and contractors, Genetec has unveiled its new airport badging solution for airports to automate employee background checks and meet TSA compliance regulations.

The new Security Center Airport Badging Solution (ABS) reduces the need to work with multiple different systems and simplifies the entire badging process. Not only does the turnkey solution minimise the risk of human error but it also streamlines the overall badging process by saving time and increasing efficiency. It’s of particular benefit to smaller and regional hubs, where the badging process is often reliant on a paper trail.

“The TSA can show up at any time, in any airport, big or small, and perform a compliance audit of their badging department,” said Joseph Degrassi, Regional Director, Public Sector at Genetec. “Unfortunately smaller airports have been mananging this process using paper, which can be a time-consuming process often resulting in lost information, and potentially large fines for compliance violations. The Genetec Airport Badging Solution provides an industry first, out-of-the-box, simple solution for these airports to ensure compliance, optimise the badging process, and lower the overhead needed to run a badging department.”

ABS’ design is based on standards raised by the TSA as well as specifics from clearing houses such as AAAE. All data collected on each badge applicant is compiled and stored within the system. Customised dashboards are included within Security Center to showcase insights such as real-time applicant statuses, and unaccounted fro badge percentages so that airport administrators can make more informed decisions, especially when it comes to meeting audit and compliance regulations set by the TSA.

London City one of first UK airports to receive ICAO-approved health accreditation

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With international travel ramping up ahead of the summer months, London City Airport has received Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and Public Health England (PHE) accreditation for new health measures.

The airport has been formally approved as COVID-secure in line with the CART Take-Off guidelines set out by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

The accreditation followed a rigorous two-day assessment, which included a full audit of the passenger journey for both departure and arrival. CAA and PHE officials saw first-hand the range of health measures that the airport has put in place, including enhanced hygiene measures, support services to staff and processes to ensure passengers can move quickly, and safely, through the airport, whilst still delivering a great customer experience.

“We understand that some passengers may be apprehensive about travelling, but they should be assured that we are not only doing everything we can to not only keep them safe, but to make the London City experience as simple and straightforward as possible,” said Alison FitzGerald, COO, London City Airport.

“Being one of the first UK airports to achieve this globally recognised health accreditation, which is endorsed by our regulator and Public Health England, will hopefully give people the confidence to book their travel with LCY for a much-deserved break this summer.”

With the airport expected to offer flights to more than 30 UK and European destinations this summer, the assessment also looked at London City’s  preparedness for a significant increase in passenger numbers. To facilitate this, the airport’s onsite testing centre will be expanded and offer all relevant tests for key international travel markets, with passengers able to pre-book £66 PCR tests for departure and arrival, and same-day result LAMP tests available for £76.

Redline sees increased demand from airports for its security solutions

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Redline, a provider of global security solutions and an Air Partner company, has secured six business wins with customers located around the world and totalling in excess of £1 million in revenues. The wins include agreements with airports, as well as public transport operators, regulatory bodies and government support agencies.

Edinburgh Airport has awarded Redline a three-year contract renewal for its x-ray threat image recognition training (TIRT) system. And Teesside International Airport has become a new customer having agreed a two-year contract with Redline for its digital Security Management System (SeMS).

Commenting on the new partnership, Phil Forster, Managing Director at Teeside International Airport said: “The airport is on an exciting journey of transformation and growth, with Redline playing a key part in our future success. Digital SeMS is a welcome enhancement that will help us to manage and improve our security performance.”

Meanwhile, Mark Briffa, CEO of Air Partners, added, “We are pleased to see a strong rebound in demand for Redline’s services in anticipation of lockdown measures and travel restrictions lifting. It is testament to our first-class product offering and customer service that both new and existing customers, from international airports to government departments, continue to place their trust in us.”

Redline is noting an increased demand for its security solutions as airports begin to scale up operations, including for its user-friendly and technically advanced TIRT system, which has been designed to fine-tune x-ray image screeners’ ability to detect even the smallest components of viable threats. Meanwhile, its proprietary SeMS, which allows managers to effectively assess and manage risk in an ever-changing threat environment, is also gaining good traction with customers.

To hope businesses across the aviation industry as they plan for the return of international travel, Air Partner has also recently launched its newly branded National Safety & Security Academy (NSSA) in Doncaster, which was previously the National Security Training Centre (NSTC).

Smiths Detection unveils new lithium battery detection for air cargo and checked baggage screening

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A leader in threat detection and security screening technologies, Smiths Detection, has launched a new lithium batteries algorithm for its dual-view air cargo and checked-baggage screening system – the HI-SCAN 10080 EDX-2is.

“We are continually striving to develop new technologies to ensure the safety of people globally,” said Richard Thompson, Global Director Aviation for Smiths Detection. “Harnessing the power of deep learning is crucial in further developing object recognition algorithms. This new technology has been developed by working with our customers to capture thousands of X-ray images to then be analysed by the new algorithm so it can learn to detect lithium batteries based on shape,” he explained.

Providing automatic detection of lithium batteries in all freight and baggage screened for explosives by the HI-SCAN 10090 EDX-2is, the algorithm reduces the burden on image analysts with very low false alarm rates.

With consumer demand for lithium batteries growing significantly, these batteries are the primary power source for personal and portable electronic devices. Classified as dangerous goods because of the potential for these batteries to ignite, lithium batteries pose a significant safety threat.

The lithium battery algorithm is part of Smiths Detection’s family of AI-algorithms, iCMORE, which Smiths Detection launched in July 2020, and which provides powerful automatic detection of dangerous goods and weapons across its conventional X-ray and EDS technologies using deep learning and classical material discrimination, increasing the safety of passengers, staff, goods and aircraft in a quick and efficient way.

“This algorithm will provide the powerful detection of lithium batteries while increasing efficiency and speed for users,” added Thompson.

JLC unveils new Airbar-Q barrier system for airports

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UK-based engineering company JLC Group has launched its new Airbar-Q barrier system, enabling efficient controlled queuing systems. The barrier system is ideal for facilities such as airports, which with restrictions easing are preparing to open up and welcome increased passenger traffic.

The Airbar-Q forms a key component within the passengers journey, allowing for higher efficiency and cost savings. The product has been designed to connect with many different hardware and software applications including people counting, queue management applications and remote control triggers, offering maximum flexibility.

Made from flexible material the Airbar barrier ensures there is no risk of harm to customers while also creating a visible and physical barrier with customisable messages/ logos and advertisements.

Kuwait Airport partners with Smiths Detection for checkpoint security screening equipment

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Security technology company, Smiths Detection, has been chosen to supply a full suite of passenger baggage screening equipment for Kuwait’s new International Airport Terminal 2, which is currently under construction. The contract includes the supply and installation of 70 x Hi-SCAN 6040 CTiX computed tomography (CT) X-rays, which allow passengers to leave electronic devices and liquids in their bags.

When complete, the new terminal will be able to handle 25 million passengers annually. Smiths Detection’s security screening technology will help ensure the quick and thorough screening of passengers travelling through the terminal.

As well as offering advanced screening for carry-on baggage, the Hi-SCAN 6040 CTiX delivers a high level of explosives detection thanks to ECAC and STAC EDS CB C3 approval. The Hi-SCAN 6040 CTiX gantry rotates at a constant speed as baggage is carried through it on teh conveyor belt. Hundreds of images are taken to create 3D images in real-time, allowing for more accurate judgements on the bag contents.

“Following from the successful award of the hold baggage screening equipment last year, we are proud to be continuing this relationship with Kuwait International Airport, providing them with the best-in-class screening equipment for the new terminal,” said Jerome de Chassey, VP APAC and Middle East.

London Heathrow Airport has also selected Smiths Detection to supply integrated checkpoints featuring the HI-SCAN 6040 CT0iX throughout the UK’s primary hub to deliver an advanced level of security and efficiency.

“Both Smiths Detection and Heathrow are focused on intelligent solutions that deliver efficiency, security and resilience; and these new lanes will allow for improvements to be easily integrated as technology develops,” said Smiths Detection President, Roland Carter.

As part of its decision making, Heathrow sought a supplier that could deliver an innovative, end-to-end solution  and integrate the lanes into the airports’ existing operational environment with no impact to capacity or passenger experience.

All three Phoenix City airports recognised for cleanliness and sanitisation efforts

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All three City of Phoenix airports  – Phoenix Sky Harbor, Phoenix Deer Valley and Phoenix Goodyear – have been recognised in the Global Biorisk Advisory Council’s (GBAC’s) STAR Facility Accreditation Program. The outbreak prevention, response, and recovery accreditation for facilities represents a high level of achievement within the cleaning industry, including 20 components that facility must meet in order to achieve the certification.

Commenting on the accreditation Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego said: “Since the pandemic started, the world has come to realise the significance and importance of  proper cleaning and disinfection to protect our health. To receive this distinction is a testament to our team’s commitment to making sure our travellers, operators, airlines, concessionaires, tenants and business partners have the safest environment possible when interacting with us.”

Accredited facilities must demonstrate they have established and maintained a cleaning and disinfecting programme to minimise risks of infectious diseases; have employed the proper protocols to clean and disinfect facilities; and have staff who are trained for outbreak and infectious disease preparation and response.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the three City of Phoenix airports have employed a number of initiatives to ensure a safe, welcoming and healthy environment for those coming through the airports. This includes a robust cleaning programme, the installation of plexiglass and UV-C LED sanitising lights on escalator handrails and more.

Amadeus addresses digital health verification needs for passengers

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Amadeus has embedded digital health passports into its Traveler ID platform to help airports and airlines speed up passenger processing while meeting regulatory requirements.

A secure platform, Traveler ID connects, digitises and automates traveller identification and document validation across the passenger journey. Following the addition of  the new capabilities it now also addresses global passenger health verification needs  by connecting the health certification touchpoints end-to-end, integrating multiple stakeholders involved in the process and providing a secure way for passengers to show they have the necessary health documentation in order to travel.

Addressing concerns around data security and privacy, Traveler ID enables passengers to choose when and where they want to provide digital evidence of their health status.

Airports can integrate the solution directly into their own digital channels, as can airlines. And because it sits natively within their IT systems, there’s no need for travellers to be redirected to third-party apps. It can be used by the passenger either before departure or while at the airport, during check-in, at a self-service kiosk or bag drop.

“Self-service check-in is a fundamental step for passengers to flow smoothly through an airport and onto a plane,” said Monika Wiederhold, Amadeus’ Global Program Lead for Safe Travel Ecosystem, and EVP Airlines Central and Eastern Europe. “Yet the current need for manual checks of health documentation, while maintaining social distancing, means that some of our airline customers currently require around 90% of their usual check-in staff to process just 30% of passengers. Travel ID’s new capability allows a passenger to show required health documentation in a secure and automated way, by adding it digitally into the airline or airport system, whether passengers check-in from home or at the airport,” she continued.

Amadeus is integrating its Travel ID solution with multiple health information aggregators, such as CommonPass and ICC AOKpass to enable travellers to retrieve digital records through the provider of their choice, without leaving the airline website, mobile or app. The platform also has direct connections to test centres partnering with airlines, providing a global, robust coverage.

To help restart travel and meet the challenges posed by COVID-19 Amadeus is bringing together travellers, governments and travel providers together through its Safe Travel Ecosystem programme, which recognises that industry-wide collaboration and open technology is key to facilitating a safer, smoother journey.

Explaining how Traveler ID contributes to the Safe Travel Ecosystem initiative, Wiederhold said: “One of our main objectives through the Safe Travel Ecosystem is to put our technology and expertise at the service of our customers in order to drive travel recovery. One way that we are doing that is by connecting existing identity and health validation initiatives in order to accelerate global adoption. All travel providers are united in our aim to strengthen traveller confidence, and the new capability that we are announcing today in Traveler ID will help support that by reducing queues and bottlenecks throughout the journey. This is only the beginning, with great potential for this solution with further customer groups. ”

Vanderlande unveils new self-service solution for security checkpoints

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Vanderlande, specialists in future-proof logistic process automation in airports has introduced its new self-service solution for airport security checkpoints.

Contributing to the seamless and contactless experience and helping to enhance safety at the checkpoint, the innovative solution allows passengers to move through the divestment process without the assistance of an agent. With self-service applications now common in airports around the world, security checkpoints are the one area lacking in self-service options and are instead often heavily reliant on constant interactions between agents and passengers.

Vanderlande’s PAX Divest Assistant has been developed to address exactly this challenge of limiting physical contact while factoring in resource limitations. With this new concept agents are located remotely and can connect to passengers in need of assistance via video calls. This capability delivers increased flexibility to airports while providing staff with a safer and more pleasant working environment.

“Vanderlande sees a future in which security screening is a seamless process and passengers can enjoy a stress-free journey through the checkpoint,” said Vanderlande’s Executive Vice President, Andrew Manship. “We believe that the launch of this new solution is the next step towards achieving this vision, moving towards a situation where efficiency and the passenger experience go hand in hand.”

Airports Authority of India enhances airspace with Aireon System

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Aireon’s space-based ADS-B air traffic surveillance system is now in use across Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata’s oceanic airspace. Having signed a contract with Aireon 18 months ago, Airports Authority of India (AAI) is making significant strides towards enhancing safety and efficiency across their ever-growing, highly trafficked area.

With a vast airspace of more than 9 million square kilometres, the deployment of space-based ADS-B provides an additional layer of surveillance, backing up AAI’s existing ground-based network. Improved communications and data sharing between Asia, the Middle East and Europe is also a main objective aimed at reducing delays and improving the flying experience for all users.

“The collaboration and determination to complete the implementation testing remotely by both the AAI and Aireon teams have set the region up for a successful 2021,” said Vineet Gulati, Board Member, Air Navigation Services, AAI. “Despite the challenges that came because of the ongoing global pandemic, AAI was able to continue testing to prepare our airspace to go live with Aireon’s safety-of-life service. When travel picks up again, AAI will be ready to support the rapid increase of aircraft in a cohesive and efficient manner.”

Prior to the roll out of the Aireon system, aircaft had to fly at uneconomical levels due to the high-traffic and many conflict points at crossing paths, burning extra fuel and resulting in additional expenses for airlines. Now, with more accurate position reporting available throughout the entire region, aircraft are more likely to get preferred flight levels and route changes, alleviating the prior issues.

Don Thoma, Aireon’s CEO, commented that “Deploying real-time air traffic surveillance is an initiative that has driven AAI to be a leader not only in the region, but throughout the world.” He added that AAI’s determination to “prepare for future air travel and improve safety to match their robust traffic growth is the innovative thinking that is propelling the aviation industry forward.”