Autumn 2021

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Autumn 2021

Welcome to the Autumn 2021 issue of Airside International, which offers a lead up to what will hopefully be the resumption of the industry events that are so important to the airport industry and its ramp operations. The International GSE Expo is scheduled for 5-7 October in Las Vegas and inter airport Europe is scheduled for Munich on 9-12 November, as well as our own event, the virtual GSE & RAMP-OPS Digital, to be held on 3-4 November.

While there are certainly indicators that the world’s aviation industry is starting to recover from the doldrums of last year and the first half of this year, there is no doubt that for those manufacturers that supply the GSE and various ramp operations infrastructure on which airport operations depend, there are still challenging times ahead. We hope that there is a strong presence at these industry shows, of both suppliers and buyers.

In the meantime, there is plenty within these pages to enjoy. A focus of this issue are the ground service providers that do so much to ensure ramp operations go so smoothly. We meet Swissport’s new(ish) president and CEO, Warwick Brady, as well as talk to Menzies about its commitment to sustainability in its global operations and to ABM Aviation and Widerøe Ground Handling about how they have coped with the industry’s disastrous downturn.

Airside also talks with dnata, another of the big handlers, in its case about its bussing operations in Dubai and the focus it puts on this customer-facing element of its service provision. That article serves as a complement to one of this issue’s features, on apron bussing, and how those involved in it are reflecting a changing market for on-apron buses.

Other features include aircraft de-icing – an example of constancy amidst the fluctuations in the nature and intensity of ramp operations of late – as well as the ground power unit (GPU) market, and how the trend towards greener power sources continues unabated. Plus, in the tugs and tractors feature, we note how collaboration is such an important part of today’s approach to aircraft apron towing.

Innovation has been a key factor in many GSE suppliers’ response to the industry situation. Resourceful as ever, we see that manufacturers and suppliers such as Mallaghan, Green Cubes Technology, ATLASAVIA and K&M are developing their product lines and reaping benefits as a result. Smaller enterprises like Airside Airport Equipment are also finding ways to survive the challenges of the moment.

Plus, in a special three-part series in this Autumn issue, we look at different products that have been designed from the ground up as examples of ‘Innovation in GSE’.

Amidst the challenges, some airports continue to expand, and we take a look at one such – Samarkand International Airport in Uzbekistan – that is growing to meet the demands of the future.

We hope you enjoy the issue.

Editorial Content