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How Embedded Sensors Foster Ground Safety in Airports

By Enterprise Technology Review | Wednesday, September 02, 2020

With working environments in airports becoming dynamic, embedded sensors are supplying advanced capabilities to ensure safe operations.

FREMONT, CA: Airports are getting busier day by day. As a result, ground operations have also become complex. Technology-enabled smart management mechanisms are helping drive efficiency into various tasks in airports. However, these mechanized systems are not equipped to respond to sudden changes. For instance, a slight change in the schedule or the absence of one worker can result in a lot of chaos. The chaos, in turn, can compromise the safety of personnel present at the site, or passengers making their way through the airport. In such a scenario, embedded sensors can make a lot of difference. The potential applications of embedded sensors in fostering improved ground safety in airports are enlisted below.

• Detecting Barricades and Obstructions

With embedded sensors, one can enable obstruction detection in various moving components at airport aprons and runways. The use of LIDAR systems that emit laser light and detect the reflected rays to create 3D renderings of the physical environment can uplift the operation safety at airports. LIDAR uses a combination of embedded sensors and creates alerts upon the detection of obstructions. Such systems empower ground staff to avoid blind spots while driving vehicles and minimize the chances of collisions.

• Effective Communications

Synchronized operations can contribute to ground safety in busy airports. With effective means of communication between vehicles and equipment, synchronized operations become convenient. Such communications can be achieved with the help systems that use a combination of embedded sensors and 3D mapping software. While embedded sensors help track down every object present on the ground, 3D mapping can provide information regarding possible interference even before they occur. Gyro sensors embedded into ground maintenance vehicles also play a role in facilitating the process by providing an accurate location of the vehicles.

Mitigating collisions at airports might get more complicated as autonomous capabilities become more common. However, embedded sensors can add plenty of cognitive capabilities into systems and enable intelligent and automated management of aprons and runways, without any compromises on safety.

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