The briefing on connected aviation

The news, views and numbers you need to know this month

The briefing on connected aviation

The news, views and numbers you need to know this month

News in numbers


The percentage of flights that were on time at Moscow’s Sheremetevo Airport in 2020, making it the world’s most punctual airport for that year, according to Cirium’s annual On-Time Performance Review

200 million

The number of passengers in East Africa who could be set to benefit from the construction of the new Msalato Airport near Dodoma, the capital city of Tanzania, according to its advocates


The amount of funding that the US Department of Energy has pumped into two new programmes to support the development of low-cost electric aviation technology


The percentage growth in global passenger traffic in October 2019, according to Airports Council International (ACI) World

22 Dec

The opening date of Sweden’s Scandinavian Mountains Airport – the world’s first airport to operate with the use of a complete remote air traffic control system


Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International has remained the world’s busiest airport since this year, over two decades ago

In quotes

Dr Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, ICAO Council President, speaking about future aviation challenges in Africa:

The airspace and aerodromes managed by ASECNA will require more and more highly trained, qualified and competent personnel in the coming years, managing many new types of aircraft and operations and at flight levels and speeds never experienced before in traditional aviation.

Jane Johnston, NATS head of corporate and community affairs, after a survey found that 81% of the British public holds a positive view of the aviation industry:

It is encouraging to see the positive views about aviation, but the figures also tell us that we clearly need to communicate our plans to modernise airspace and increase our engagement with the public on the changes that are coming so that they can get involved in the process. The environment is a priority as we look at redesigning our skies over the next few years.

Kristin Slyker, vice president, Connected Aircraft Honeywell Aerospace:

The airline industry is beginning to seriously invest in connected aircraft technology to proactively improve daily operations. The result is airline employees performing their daily roles more effectively, while also delivering the kind of service that passengers expect…

Top stories

Abu Dhabi Airports subsidiary Abu Dhabi Airports Free Zone Authority has signed an agreement with Middle East General Enterprises (MGE) to support the expansion of DHL Express in the Abu Dhabi Airports Free Zone (ADAFZ). Valid for 27 years, the Musataha Agreement is a key step in the Express Integrator cluster development at the East Midfield Development Zone in the ADAFZ. It also aligns with Abu Dhabi’s strategic logistics plan, which is the outcome of ADAFZ’s pledge to offer ‘world-class infrastructure’ to aid the expansion of cargo companies at Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH). DHL Express and MGE will provide an investment of around AED365m ($99.3m) for the new facility. Spanning over 30,000m², the DHL facility is expected to begin operations by the final quarter of 2021.

Source: Airport Technology

British Airways (BA) has announced plans to test AI-powered autonomous robots at Heathrow Terminal 5 to further enhance punctuality for passengers. From this year, the robots will be used in the terminal to guide passengers through the airport. This will allow the airline’s staff to focus on answering more complex queries. Produced by BotsAndUs, the robots are capable of interacting in different languages with the help of translation technology. They can provide answers to a variety of different questions, including real-time flight information. Equipped with geolocation technology and advanced sensors, the robots can traverse across the airport and transport passengers to different locations such as BA’s Special Assistance and Family Check-In zones.

Source: Airport Technology

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a $272.12m loan for the construction of an international airport in Dodoma, Tanzania. Msalato International Airport will be constructed in the Msalato district, 12km from the capital Dodoma. Of the total loan amount, AfDB will provide $198.6m while African Development Fund (ADF) will contribute $23.52m. In addition, $50m will be provided in co-financing with the Africa Growing Together Fund (AGTF). The loan amount will be used to construct a high-capacity airport that can accommodate the future growth of Tanzania’s air transport. Work will include the construction of a passenger terminal, a runway and air navigation equipment. Other operational services for the project include water supply systems and electrical power distribution substations. Construction is expected to take place over four years. The airport will be capable of handling around 50,000 flight movements and one million passengers annually.

Source: Airport Technology

A survey carried out by Turkish Airlines in India has revealed that 50% of respondents prefer air travel to other modes of transport, with 73% of them ranking in-flight connectivity and onboard mobile phone calls as high on their preference list. The majority expressed an interest in using the services if charges were only slightly higher than normal usage tariffs.

Source: Times of India

In-flight mobile phone service provider AeroMobile has partnered with telecommunications operator Etisalat to reduce the cost of using mobile phones during flights. AeroMobile’s service allows subscribers to stay online, make and receive calls, and listen to voicemail on connected aircraft at no extra cost.

Source: Aircraft Interiors International

Singapore Technologies Engineering and SatixFy have established a new joint venture targeting the in-flight connectivity market. The new subsidiary, Jet-Talk, has been established in the UK with a share capital of $20m. JetTalk will develop a satellite antenna system for the delivery of in-flight connectivity for the commercial aviation sector.

Source: Telecom Asia

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