Swissport signs technology deal with Honeywell as it looks improve ground operations

posted on 10th December 2018 by Justin Burns
Swissport signs technology deal with Honeywell as it looks improve ground operations

Swissport International has signed a five-year agreement with Honeywell to deploy the the GoDirect Ground service across its global operation as it looks to further boost performance and efficiencies.

The technology created in partnership with global telematics company Pinnacle, enables users to connect ramp support services used for airport-based ground transportation vehicles giving ground handlers and airlines real-time insight into vehicle use and maintenance requirements.

Swissport said Honeywell’s GoDirect Ground solution will enable it to connect the ramps it uses at airports, which will unlock efficiencies and provide real-time insight into the activity of ground-based equipment used at airports.

This includes vehicles undertaking aircraft loading and unloading, baggage sorting and passenger or crew transportation. Following a successful proof of concept demonstration at five of its ground handling stations earlier this year, Swissport evaluated the benefits of the GoDirect Ground solution and recognised an estimated 13 per cent reduction in repair and maintenance costs, a better understanding of driver behaviours and identification of the most commonly driven pathways at airports.

“Connected and software-driven technology is set to have a profound impact on the evolution of ground-handling, and we’re working with Honeywell to move the industry forward with the creation of the connected ramp. There are endless possibilities with this kind of solution,” said Swissport International vice president of globla fleet, David Burgess.

“With more accessible data we can create a safer and more efficient ramp environment, drive better on-time performance and lower fuel and maintenance costs. Additionally, telematics will help us ‘right size’ our vast ground-support fleet through more efficient allocation and utilization, thereby reducing congestion and saving on long term capital expenditure. We are confident that this approach will enhance our position as the industry’s leading ground handler.”

Using a combination of connectivity and telematics, the connected ramp allows ground-based vehicles at airports to transmit data that can be fed into Honeywell’s GoDirect Ground software.

This gives ground handlers the ability to collate the resulting data, which is then measured through an operator-friendly interface. This data collection allows users to monitor vehicle use and alter or improve services with a view to achieving faster turnaround times, more intuitive maintenance processes and better use of fuel; this can lead to a reduction in operational costs and improvement in services for airlines and airports.

Honeywell Aerospace vice president of connected aircraft, Kristin Slyker said GoDirect Ground software and services will enable ground handlers like Swissport to “drive transformation creating next generation efficiency, visibility, and cost savings”.

He added: “Savings on fuel and maintenance costs are just some of the initial benefits that this technology can deliver to ground handlers around the world.  Ultimately, true integration of ground operations with airport and airline processes is now a real possibility driving even greater opportunities for the creation of value for everyone that flies.”

Swissport and Honeywell signed an initial five-year master services agreement that could see the GoDirect Ground solution used across Swissport’s global operation base, which spans more 50 countries and 318 airports worldwide; servicing more than 265 million passengers and handling approximately 4.7 million tonnes of air cargo each year.