Indal's boarding system could benefit A380

A fully automated passenger boarding (APB) system that can deploy as many as three bridges to an aircraft with the push of a button is currently under consideration by several airport operators and airlines, including Airbus A380 customer Lufthansa.

The APB system is manufactured by Canada's Indal Technologies, which supplies Aircraft-Ship Integrated Secure & Traverse (ASIST) aircraft handling systems to navies throughout the world.

Indal has adapted its ASIST technology to create what it claims to be the "first passenger boarding system that does not require a trained operator to drive". Using a camera and infrared light source to illuminate a small pattern of reflective markings on the aircraft, the APB system "sees" the exact location of the aircraft door and deploys a bridge with an accuracy of 2cm (1in), says Indal. The APB system could prove interesting to A380 customers, as it can deploy up to three bridges simultaneously.

Indal is in talks with Lufthansa and Frankfurt airport operator Fraport to supply a three-bridge installation. Operational trials partially funded by the Canadian government have been under way with Air Canada at Toronto.



Source: Flight International