Using AI in Airports
The evolution of airport IT has reached a tipping point. The combination of emerging technological capabilities and immense data feeds is pushing us on a path where we can see radical changes in not only how passengers enter and exit airplanes, but also how airplanes enter and exit airports. The applications of AI are set to change several existing processes.
A streamlined, fuss-free experience awaits the fliers of the future. AI has been cited in several newly launched programs, and research reveals that almost 50 percent of airlines and airports are planning to adopt predictive tools using cognitive computing and AI over the next five years. A few font-runners have already started with trials n predictive modeling, data mining and machine learning.
Flight disruptions, especially due to the weather, are a major cause of concern. Airports and airlines have started looking at technologies that enhance responsiveness during disruptions, and improve customer service and performance. Many airlines are investing in R&D programs for prediction and warning systems relying on AI. Chatbots are another area of interest—they can perform check-ins, book flights, and help with customer service. A machine enabling reservation via voice commands is already in use.
AI is already a part of airport experiences and operations—biometric systems use facial or fingerprint recognition, and cameras can inform passengers about queue times and detect operational incidents requiring attention. As air transport meets the challenge of significant growth, AI is expected to become a part of the industry’s fabric—autonomous vehicles, smart planes, flight operation, disruption recovery and overall air traffic control will become a reality. The airport’s infrastructure will utilize AI to analyze videos in real time, and for boarding systems and biometric screening.
AI will manage robots that provide information and guidance, and aid in check-in, immigration and several other operations around airport operations and security. When equipped with facial recognition, robots can understand speech, scan passports and boarding passes, print information or display it on screens, and show people the way. Further, AI can be used to integrate airlines, airports, security systems and the government. Robot-augmented AI can support flight operations, baggage handling, facility management and cargo operations. AI can work behind the scenes to smoothen the passenger experience.
The optimal use of AI will enable us to retain and process useful data and make it available. However, it is essential to understand the necessity to collaborate and share this data so that it can be leveraged for the benefit of stakeholders.
The global shift to self-service and constantly increasing passenger demand makes the use of AI in airports a game-changer that increases the efficiency of the air transport industry and improves the passenger journey.