The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) has launched two new initiatives at Changi Airport to help boost productivity through the adoption of technology.
The Smart Apron initiative will see airport operator Changi Airport Group (CAG) and CAAS invest more than S$20m (US$15m) in creating an airport-wide wi-fi network over the next six years. The new communication network will cover all aircraft stands at Terminals 1 to 4, as well as remote and cargo aircraft stands.
This will provide airport companies with a new platform to help drive productivity and innovation in airside operations. Initial plans include the deployment of approximately 2,500 mobile devices to provide ground staff with access to real-time data and work instructions, enabling them to quickly respond to operational changes.
In addition, CAAS will be investing S$15m (US$11m) over the next four years to further encourage airlines’ adoption of self-service passenger processes at the airport. The Fast and Seamless Travel (FAST) fund is triple the amount of the previous Passenger Self-Service Adoption Programme. It will award grants, valued from S$400,000 (US$300,000) to S$2.5m (US$1.9m) to airlines to offset costs involved in implementing self-service initiatives such as check-in kiosks, bag-drop systems and self-boarding gates.
Kevin Shum, director general of CAAS, said, “As we face an increasingly challenging aviation landscape, CAAS is committed to driving greater airport innovation and operational efficiency. This will ensure continual delivery of high service standards at Changi and help uphold its hub competitiveness. Working with our partners is key to enabling Singapore aviation to capitalize on growth opportunities together as one aviation community.”
Lee Seow Hiang, CEO of CAG, said, “The funding support CAAS has committed for the two programs will augment CAG’s ongoing efforts at enhancing operational efficiencies and passenger convenience at Changi Airport. CAG has been consulting closely with our partners to map out their needs based on a broader wi-fi scope airside. This will realize greater efficiencies in existing areas such as aircraft servicing, while enabling new capabilities like location tracking and video streaming.
“The FAST Fund will accelerate the roll-out of our FAST@Changi initiative, which has gained steady traction with passengers as more airlines joined the FAST family over the past year. With the funding support and the increasing familiarity of travelers about self-service options, we invite more airlines to come on board FAST@Changi to bring about an enhanced travel experience for their passengers.”