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Aurrigo is creating a digital twin of a US airport that will explore the viability of introducing autonomous solutions to airside operations.

Aurrigo investigates autonomy at Gerald R. Ford International Airport

Aurrigo is creating a digital twin of a US airport that will explore the viability of introducing autonomous solutions to airside operations. The Coventry-based developer of autonomous vehicles will use its Auto-Sim software to create an airside digital twin of operations at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Michigan.

Aurrigo embarks on US aviation first with Gerald R. Ford International Airport project

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  • Cost savings from Auto-Sim® will enhance the customer experience, boost operational efficiency and achieve lasting positive environmental improvements

Coventry, January 20: A UK transport technology specialist is about to embark on an aviation first in the US that could provide the blueprint for the airports of the future.

Aurrigo, which is leading the world in first and last mile autonomous passenger transport and aviation baggage and cargo solutions, will use its Auto-Sim® software platform to create a ‘digital twin’ of airside operations at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Michigan.

The Ford Launchpad for Innovative Technologies and Entrepreneurship (FLITE) provides pilot-testing opportunities to companies focused on bringing emerging air travel solutions to market. 

Through this initiative, Aurrigo will identify cost savings, enhance customer experience, achieve a host of environmental improvements and, importantly, lay the foundations for how the airport could implement autonomous operations in the future.

Utilising a PlanetM Testing Grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Aurrigo will build a model of airside operations, covering roadways, intersections, stands and all operational vehicle types and movements.

A team of expert simulation engineers and project management specialists, based in its advanced engineering centre in the UK, will work with Ford International Airport planning staff to integrate vehicle fleet capacity and flight schedules so they can simulate airside servicing to benchmark current operations and predict future scenarios.

As well as modelling operations, the Auto-Sim® software platform can also simulate the effects of staff shortages due to Covid-19, flights delays, the de-icing schedule for departing aircraft and severe weather events including heavy snow and ice.

David Keene, CEO of Aurrigo, said: “The world’s airports are all facing the same challenge of providing greater levels of customer service with the most cost-effective use of resources and minimal environmental impact. It’s a careful balancing act and one brought into even sharper focus with the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Auto-Sim® will enable Ford International Airport to be the first in the US to complete a real-world feasibility study of a current airport using digital twin technology.”

He continued: “This allows airport planners to model the operational processes, financial implications, customer journey experience and environmental impact of implementing new technology without the risk of expensive mistakes.

“We hope it will encourage other airports within the US and around the world to utilise the Auto-Sim® platform to streamline operations and reduce their environmental impact, whilst also providing the optimal customer experience and preparing them for future operations that involve airside automated vehicles.”

Aurrigo will work with Ford International Airport and consortium partners Southwest Airlines, Stantec, Seamless and the Michigan Office of Future Mobility & Electrification to complete this project by the end of May 2022.

Auto-Sim® has the capability to replicate the airport’s busiest periods, which at any given day, could include 112 aircraft movements, requiring upwards of 1000 individual activities to be serviced.

Before the pandemic, Michigan’s second busiest airport catered for nearly 3.6 million annual passengers and, in 2019, handled 41.4million kg of air freight – all considerations that will be factored into the modelling work.

The technology can also generate detailed energy consumption data for every vehicle modelled in the airside operations, including optimising current operations and exploring ways to minimise distance travelled to service the flight schedule. 

”FLITE enables us to partner with entrepreneurs and established companies focused on developing innovative new products and services to improve Airport operations and air travel experience for guests,” said Tory Richardson, president and CEO of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority. 

“We are proud to welcome Aurrigo to our Airport to offer them the opportunity to test their Auto-Sim® software platform alongside our airside operations.”

Aurrigo has been creating headlines in the aviation sector after using its Auto-Sim®   technology to help Changi Airport in Singapore with development work on a new terminal. 

The company, which was founded by brothers David and Graham Keene nearly 30 years ago, has also used its in-house software, technology and engineering expertise to develop the Auto-Dolly®, a new autonomous luggage and cargo system that has the potential to deliver 60% carbon savings for airports.

It is anticipated that the digital twin modelling work could prove the business case for these dollies to replace conventional diesel-powered luggage and cargo tractors and trailers by two thirds.

David concluded: “COP26 highlighted how important sustainability will be in the future global economy and airports have a massive role to play in minimising their environmental impact.”

For further information, please visit www.aurrigo.com or follow @aurrigotech on twitter for updates

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About Aurrigo

Operating from its Advanced Engineering Centre in the UK, Aurrigo is a technology leader in autonomous passenger transport and baggage/cargo solutions for customers all over the world.

The company boasts extensive design, engineering, software and project management expertise, all undertaken and completed in-house, making it an ideal and trusted partner to Government projects in Australia, Canada, UK and the US.

This approach has seen it lead the way when it comes to first and last mile transport solutions, achieving a number of commercial deals and world firsts in autonomous trials involving live traffic and travel within major exhibition centres.

Founded almost 30 years ago by brothers David and Graham Keene, Aurrigo is enjoying significant success in developing new solutions for the aviation sector and has already worked with Heathrow and Changi airports to explore the use of autonomous technology in improving customer, operational and environmental performance. 

Aurrigo embarks on US aviation first with Gerald R. Ford International Airport project.

Ford International Airport Launches FLITE to Develop, Introduce New High-Tech Air Travel Solutions

Partnership with MEDC, Southwest Airlines Provides Grants to Innovation-Driven Companies, Allowing Them to Test New Products, Services in Live Airport Environment Grand Rapids, Michigan, January 19, 2022 – With support from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. and Southwest Airlines, the Gerald R.

Aston partners with Aurrigo through KTP to develop autonomous vehicles

Shared with kind permission of Aston University

Aston University partners with Aurrigo (part of the RDM Group) to develop and implement a sophisticated machine vision solution for autonomous vehicles in low-speed environments using a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP).

https://www.aston.ac.uk/business/collaborate-with-us/knowledge-transfer-partnership.

Aurrigo is looking forward to supporting the Global Investment Summit event in London tonight and tomorrow. We are proud to be one of the twelve hand picked companies, showcasing our autonomous vehicle solutions to the worlds biggest investors. #innovation #driverlessvehicles #investment

Queen’s green summit to bring billions to UK

Ministers hope Her Majesty’s presence will help to seal a string of huge deals at the Global Investment Summit It is expected that billions of pounds of investment into green energy will be announced as a show of Britain’s determination to hit net zero carbon by 2050 The summit will host more than 200 business titans, including Jamie Dimon, the JPMorgan chief seen as the world’s most powerful banker The Queen and senior Royals will this week roll out the red carpet to global business leaders in an unprecedented attempt to secure overseas investment into Britain.

International investment platform for Aurrigo’s autonomous technologies

One of Coventry’s leading manufacturers will showcase its latest autonomous technology at the Global Investment Summit taking place in London tomorrow.

Aurrigo, which employs 70 people at its Advanced Engineering Centre on the Bilton Industrial Estate, is part of a ‘green dozen’ that have been selected due to their ability to drive the UK’s sustainable future.

The company will have its electric-powered 4-seater ‘Auto-Pod’ and ‘Auto-Dolly’ luggage and cargo solution on display to more than 200 potential investors who are expected to arrive ahead of COP26.

Selection comes just a few weeks after it announced its best-ever month of autonomous sales, with £500,000 of new deals in place with local authorities, universities and other commercial partners.

“Our vehicles are revolutionising the aviation, transport and logistics sectors, helping our customers achieve greener and more sustainable operations,” explained David Keene, CEO of Aurrigo.

“Whether it’s our Auto-Shuttle, Auto-Pod or our aviation first Auto-Dolly, all our autonomous technology is built on electric-powered vehicles, designed and developed by us, which deliver advanced performance and environmental improvements for our customers and their end users.

He continued: “The Global Investment Summit is a perfect platform to promote Aurrigo and our game-changing technologies to the world.”

Hosted by the Prime Minister and supported by members of the Royal Family, the Global Investment Summit will demonstrate Britain’s commitment to green industrial revolution in the UK and abroad ahead of COP26, and promote the UK as a top destination for foreign investment.

Attendees will see the latest cutting-edge innovation that is helping deliver key areas of the Prime Minister’s Ten-Point Plan, helping cement the UK’s position as a science superpower and the world’s number one centre for green technology. 

The country’s pioneering work in this space will be vital in helping reduce emissions and limit the rise in global temperatures.

Minister for Investment Gerry Grimstone said: “Our Global Investment Summit will put UK innovation on the map and demonstrate how we can use investment to nurture technological developments and propel our economy towards a more prosperous, exciting future.

“Aurrigo and the other businesses show why the UK is a global hub for green technology – from major advances in tidal turbines and fusion energy, to electric vehicle development and zero emission aircrafts.

“These industries of the future will not only help ensure a cleaner, greener planet but also create high-value jobs across the UK.”

Aurrigo recently supplied its £250,000 fully autonomous and electric Auto-Shuttle as part of ground-breaking passenger trials currently being delivered at the NEC.

Carrying up to eight passengers, the vehicle uses a suite of sensors to understand its surroundings, allowing it to move around safely, interacting with live traffic with little or no operator input. 

The testing at the NEC, backed by funds from the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP), sees it operate autonomously along a 1-mile pre-mapped section of Pendigo Way between Hall 5 and Resorts World and expects to cater for more than 1000 people during the four-week period.

For further information, please visit www.aurrigo.com or follow @aurrigotech on twitter

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