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In depth

GRASP Innovations – COVID-19 Pull the Data

Breukelen, The Netherlands – June 4th, 2020

The effect of the ongoing global pandemic results in a situation where airports are required to accommodate social distanced processes. Social distancing within a security checkpoint can be a very daunting challenge, as we described in our previous post. Over the last weeks we have been focussed on a technology driven solution that facilitates social distancing in the short term and enables significant future benefits.

This radical process change has been thoroughly modelled in collaboration with our former colleagues at Point FWD, convincing us in the last couple of weeks that the operational effect of moving from a Push process to a Pull process especially in these times can be very beneficial.

Pull based on availability

This concept is enabled by our existing Security Checkpoint Management System, deploying IR-UWB radars to measure every substep (from divest space occupancy to recheck times) of a security checkpoint and therewith enabling load balancing, detailed analytics and operational improvements. But in these times used to enable Pull.

  • Passengers exiting the queue will be directed to a security lane based on the capacity at the last sub-process; reclaim/recheck
  • Passengers hold in the checkpoint queue until a lane is available with sufficient capacity at all sub-processes
  • Queuing within the security process will be prevented; a passenger can proceed based on the capacity of succeeding sub-processes
  • Social distancing can be guaranteed by not exceeding the maximum capacity per sub-process.

Pull the Data

Paul van Gaalen – Senior Consultant

Paul van Gaalen, Senior Consultant at Point FWD explains: “The most significant change between existing push processes and our intended pull is the dynamic balancing of where passengers go based on availability at reclaim opposed to pushing passengers to divest and subsequently to passenger screening and reclaim.

The result is a minimisation of queuing within the security lane itself – enabling social distancing. Effectively we’re using the difference in process times of the subprocess to accommodate the Pull.

On average passenger screening + reclaim is a slower process than divest , so by using the divest spots as in-process buffer locations we can ensure a passenger is ready to fill in availability at reclaim as it becomes available. Subsequently, a passenger can be pulled from the general queue into the process as it becomes available, resulting in a very high occupancy of divest”.

Our modelings have shown us a very stable and predictable output for a Pull process, with throughput numbers between 100 – 150PAX/hr for an average Automatic Tray Return System Lane (with normal throughput rates of ±175PAX/hr). These modellings can be shared and discussed, feel free to contact us directly.

Join forces

We firmly believe that there is no golden bullet solution for the re-opening of the aviation industry and cooperation between parties (airports, legislators and suppliers) is crucial.

Combinations of innovative solutions from curb to deck; self-service check-in, queue management, automatic allocation of passengers, smart security and immigration processes. While maintaining an equal load on these processes so queueing and build up of passengers is limited.

Therefore we want to end with a call to action; let’s connect and join forces so our industry can re-open soon and safe.