Dubai's Airport Show to put focus on sustainability, innovation

As the global airport industry works its ways to become carbon net-zero by 2050 through enhancing infrastructure, technology-based operational efficiencies, robust controls and benchmarked excellence, this year's Airport Show, will put sharp focus on sustainability and innovation. 


The key aviation sector boasts more than 40,000 ICAO-coded airports with revenues ballooning to over $173 billion, said the event organisers Reed Exhibitions Middle East. 


Together in Innovating Future Sustainable Airports will be the theme of the world’s largest annual airport industry B2B platform, which runs from May 9 to 11. 


The 22nd edition of the Airport Show will connect over 200-plus aviation brands and 100-plus buyers from over 30 airports and aviation authorities from 20 countries. Also taking place on its sidelines will be key industry-specific exhibitions and conferences such as Sustainable Apron, Innovation Trail and Sustainability Trail. 


As the expanded, evolved version of the e-Apron at 2022 edition, the Sustainable Apron, in continued partnership with dnata, will feature ground handling equipment and services that enable airports in their sustainability goals. 


Innovation Trail will be a bespoke customer experience which includes an impressive line-up of breakthrough innovations from leading airport suppliers in more than 20 countries, it stated. 


Sustainability Trail will have a strong focus on products and services that enable regional airports to shape their roadmaps to sustainability this year, according to Reed Exhibitions. 


Over its three-day run at the Dubai World Trade Centre, it will highlight ways sustainable aviation can contribute to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Airports Council International’s Sustainability Strategy through improved service quality, widening infrastructure development, and ensuring safe and efficient operations by all the stakeholders. 


It will see over 4,500 visitors, with the exhibitors coming from Belgium, China, Denmark, France, Germany, India, Italy, Korea, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, UK and US, said the organiser. 


May Ismail, Event Manager at Reed Exhibitions Middle East, said: "Environmental impacts and energy efficiency in the medium-and-long term are among the key areas of concern and focus by airports in operating their facilities and services. It includes energy consumption in the heating, lighting and cooling of a terminal and for powering systems that support the daily operations of an airport, including passenger services, ground vehicles and airside services."


The products that will be considered in this trial are those supporting airports in reducing CO2 emissions and promoting operational efficiencies at airports, he noted. 


SITA, the world’s leading specialist in air transport communications and IT, has found that by 2024-end, 62% of airports will have policies or frameworks in place that includes environmental impacts and lifecycle management controls. 


The airports are focusing on the environmental impacts of the technology and plans to implement newer solutions to drive greater efficiencies and support their de-carbonization efforts.


Raed Younes, UAE & Regional Business Development, dnata, said: "As a part of Emirates Group, we provide ground handling, cargo, travel, flight catering and retail services in 38 countries across six continents. In 2022, dnata successfully launched an e-Apron at the Airport Show 2022 with the support of the event organiser, RX Global."


"At its 2023 edition, the Sustainable Apron will be even bigger and better, featuring advanced ground support equipment (GSE) and the latest technologies that significantly enhance environmental efficiency at airports,' he stated.


Siemens Logistics CEO Michael Schneider said: "For us, the key to sustainability lies in life-time considerations for equipment paired with automation, and digitalization."


"Take, for example, Baggage 360, our digital solution which considerably increases the efficiency of existing operations and eco-systems. It provides airports / customers with forecasting and optimization functions allowing them to plan operations well in advance. This saves resources and with that environmental footprint and costs," he stated.


Benjamin Violet, Regional Sales Manager for Middle East and Africa at ITW GSE, said: "The aviation industry’s sharp environmental focus needs equipment with lower energy consumption. In fact, the Middle East major airports have led the way in switching off the APU by equipping their infrastructure with line powered GPUs and PCAs."


"Now the focus is to move away from diesel equipment and replace with battery powered eGSE. At ITW GSE, we have played a key part of this transition supplying the zero emission battery driven 7400 eGPU since 2018. Some of the infrastructure challenges we see is the need for more charging points and grid power," explained Violet.


He pointed out that its newly launched EcoGate will amongst other things help with the eGSE's charging situation in the airport. 


"EcoGate helps airports optimize their operations by connecting gate equipment into a unified and intelligent system, such as GPUs, PCAs, charging stations, and even aircraft detection systems," he added. 


Jurek Grzeszek, Director of Sales and Services at TLD MEAI, an Alvest Group company specializing in designing and manufacturing GSE at its nine factories across the world, said sustainability was not only an environmental and social responsibility but also enhanced long-term profitability and brand reputation and encourages innovation.


"Today several airports are pursuing transition in a fast-paced mode but infrastructural changes take time. The available technology is compatible with the current needs. TLD continues to innovate with Electric Drivelines allowing GSE to adapt to airport infrastructure," he added. 


Erik Velderman, CEO, TKH Airport Solutions, said the company has been seeing a growing interest from the Middle East region for sustainable innovations. 


In the airfield ground lighting business, innovations like smart airfield lighting, individual lamp control and implementation of ‘Floating Follow-the-Greens’ technologies have become hot topics. 


TKH’s CEDD airfield ground lighting technology is gaining traction in the region the technologies have been providing the tools for airports to become more efficient airside, reduce operations cost and increase revenue by through efficient slot sales, he added.-TradeArabia News Service





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