Airport technology systems developer Veovo has introduced new technology that will enable social distancing among its clients.
The firm has announced it has developed new virtual queueing and passenger density management solutions.
These use movement monitoring and machine learning to offer real-time and predictive passenger density and movement insights to help airports manage their future flows of travellers.
Veovo said as COVID-19 lockdowns begin to ease, the pace at which flying restrictions will be lifted is will be “heavily influenced” by airports’ ability to implement physical distancing measures.
James Williamson, chief executive of Veovo, said: “Having worked with busy airports like JFK, Amsterdam and Auckland, in smoothing passenger journeys, we understand the enormous challenge the industry currently faces in supporting physical distancing.
“To safely manage crowding, operators need accurate, timely data. By accommodating new social distancing needs in our solution, we enable safe and proactive planning to reduce crowds and to make sanitation and disinfection programmes more effective.”
Virtual queuing will enable travellers to pre-book a time slot for processing at airport checkpoints so airports can control queue entry.
Available time slots are adjusted in real-time, based on queue wait times, changing arrival patterns and processing capacity so that passengers show up at the optimum time.
Passenger density management systems monitor crowd density in queues and spaces across terminals, enabling airports to take action if social distancing limits are at risk of being breached.
The solution uses location analysis from Internet of Things sensors combined with machine learning to give a detailed view of how people move and dwell.
Live heatmaps and dashboards show operators a breakdown of the current situation, triggering tailored alarms and automated actions if density thresholds are exceeded.
Recommendations to limit crowding can include capping entry to busy escalators or stairwells, adjusting security lane openings, changing call-to-gate times, updating digital signage, or distributing gate and baggage belt allocations.
Veovo said operators can improve the responsiveness of sanitation service providers, directing teams to where cleaning is most needed.
The platform also includes predictive capabilities to help operators manage crowding and plan days, weeks and months ahead by giving detailed insights into people’s movement habits, and how factors like time of day or day of the week, or other events, affect passenger behaviour.