Ready, steady, go GRU airport!

Date: 20 June 2013
Location: São Paulo, Brazil


Sao Paulo Airport selects SITA to transform airport operations in run up to World Cup and Olympics in Brazil

GRU Airport, the largest in Latin America, has chosen SITA to transform its operations and optimize the flow of aircraft as it gets ready for the influx of international visitors for the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. SITA’s next generation airport management system (AMS) will simplify the airport’s operations to deliver a world-class passenger experience.

For passengers a very visible change will be 1,000 new electronic display screens throughout the airport displaying the latest flight information. They will also give passengers up-to-date information on boarding locations, baggage belts and other important information via seamless, automated audio and visual messaging. 

It is at the heart of the operations, which passengers never see - the Airport Command and Control Center, which is monitored by the Center of IT Operations - where the real transformation will take place. The new technology from SITA will give Brazil’s largest airport proactive control over all operations, benefitting its millions of passengers by improving their journey through the airport. It will also enable the airport and its stakeholders - including airlines, customs, immigration and ground handlers - to collaborate around the same real-time information and make fully-informed decisions on resources and other issues.

Luiz Ritzmann, Chief Information Officer for GRU Airport said: “With millions of visitors expected to converge on Brazil for the World Cup and Olympics, and normal passenger traffic expected to double by 2022, we’re preparing to handle more passengers, baggage and cargo as efficiently as possible. SITA’s Airport Management System will help us better integrate airside and operations so we can turn aircraft around faster, increase passenger throughput and better coordinate our ground services. It will also help us eliminate bottlenecks at check-in, customs and security because we can work together with our partners, sharing data and collaborating. This integrated and ‘intelligent airport’ view, which SITA’s technology gives us, will allow us to deploy resources as needed in real-time.”

SITA’s revolutionary airport management system, which GRU Airport will use, includes two key innovations: AirportCentral and Airport Orchestrator. Bringing together information from across the airport and from multiple systems, they present data in an intelligent and intuitive way on “action boards”. These go beyond the typical dashboard and enable the airport team to take action with a mere tap of a finger or click. The system then automatically updates all related data and activities, feeding the updates to all users in real time and flagging any operational irregularities, such as missing resources or flights which are delayed in their turnaround process.

The AirportCentral Airport Operational Database will act as a central point for proactively controlling operations and facilitating financial controls. AirportResource Manager will empower planning and help coordinate real-time management of both staff and equipment, including departure gates, baggage carousels and check-in desks.  

Mauro Pontes, SITA Vice President, Brazil said: “By harnessing the power of our next generation airport management system, GRU Airport is bringing the vision of the ‘intelligent airport’ to life. The airport will be able to track, manage and share information with all important stakeholders in real time, providing a whole new level of business intelligence. For example, they can monitor check-in and security queues and either immediately add more resources or re-direct passenger flows to where they can be processed faster. This will increase the airport’s overall flexibility, providing proactive control over operations, while enhancing the passenger journey.”

SITA has more than 25 years of experience helping international airports and government border security agencies manage extra passenger flows for world sporting events. The company played a crucial role in passenger facilitation and border management for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. SITA has also helped airports in Los Angeles, Sydney, Athens, Beijing and others gear up for the sudden influx of air passengers associated with the Olympic Games and other large global events. 

More than 125 airports around the world use SITA’s leading airport management systems, which are widely recognized for their continuous innovation.  GRU Airport is one of the largest airports to date to adopt SITA’s next generation system. The new technology is part of GRU’s major renovation and modernization program to enable it to better handle the demands of the country’s travelling population, along with an increase in foreign tourists and upcoming global sporting events.

The airport will launch the new system in terminals 1, 2 and 4 by the end of 2013: it will go live in the new terminal 3 once construction is completed in 2014.