All posts by A.Natalías

Iberia Airport Services (IBAS) has just added electric aircraft tractors (green pushback) operated by remote control to its fleet at Madrid and Barcelona airports.

A few years, ago, IBAS decided to transform its handling business in Spain by adopting the innovative and sustainable solutions already explored by the industry.

One of the most sophisticated pieces of equipment on the market to offer our customers a quality service while delivering the following benefits:

  • Enhanced operational safety thanks to more efficient and accurate guiding
  • Greater punctuality
  • Greater efficiency (the 80V battery can be used for up to 28 aircraft without being recharged)
  • Significant reduction in fuel consumption
  • Reduction of emissions on the apron

In spite of the current crisis in the aviation sector, IBAS remains as committed as ever to delivering sustainable, efficient, safe and excellent handling services. Another step towards innovation and digitalisation, with sights firmly on the future, ready for when normal airport operations resume after the pandemic.

A few days ago in Vigo we implemented Push-To-Talk (PTT), the new mobile method that combines telephone, radio and flight control functions in a single device.

As we explained in previous issues, PTT is a communication system that uses a mobile application (app) to emulate a traditional two-way radio using the mobile data network instead of radio frequencies.

The benefits for users couldn’t be clearer:

  • The two-way radio is complemented with a mobile phone containing a memorised list of the key phone numbers to cover the operation.
  • The device itself is very light, weighing less than a traditional two-way radio and offering a higher battery capacity.
  • Shadow areas beyond the reach of a traditional two-way radio are no longer an issue.
  • Conversations are recorded and the user can retrieve the recording of the last call if necessary.
  • The device comes with a camera.
  • It’s compatible with other tools used in flight operations, such as Kepler (a real-time resource planning and management tool that is being installed at all airports).

The digitalisation initiatives within the GoUp! transformation project that the Airport Services Division (DSA) is currently carrying out are progressing as planned. New mobile technologies are being implemented and extended to all the airports we service to improve process efficiency and profitability, and we are firmly committed to simpler, more agile working methods to improve the daily tasks of our employees.

Vigo is the latest to join our list of airports that already use Push-To-Talk technology: San Sebastián, Pamplona, Alicante, Tenerife Sur, Gran Canaria, Bilbao and Málaga.

Iberia Airport Services continues to invest in the renewal of its fleet of rolling stock as part of its forward-looking GoUp! Plan which aims to make every operation on the airport apron more efficient, safer and more eco-friendly by harnessing the benefits delivered by the new technologies available in the age of digital transformation.

The novelty on this occasion is the ‘official’ launch of a new fuel truck at Madrid-Barajas Airport, soon to be joined by three more trucks: another one at Madrid, one at Bilbao and then one at Barcelona.

These are some of the features:

  • Each truck has two tanks filled with the two types of diesel used at the airport:
    • Type A: for commercial vehicles (flight coordinator cars, vans, etc.) with a capacity of 1,700 litres.
    • Type B: for the different pieces of ground equipment that you’re already familiar with, in this case with a capacity of 2,700 litres.
  • An auxiliary ladder on the side provides direct access to employees for refilling the tanks, instead of having to climb to a height of 2 metres without any safety rails.
  • They come with auxiliary tanks for synthetic oil, antifreeze fluid and ADBlue (system for regenerating exhaust fumes built into the new latest-generation ground equipment to comply with legislation on emissions) so that other levels can be checked and replenished at the same time.
  • They also have work lamps, interior lighting and a retractable automatic hose reel for those of us with less expertise… they might be ‘hard to digest’ but they certainly have plenty of features.

Recently 39 new vans have been incorporated at the Madrid-Barajas airport, with air conditioning, speed limiter and more interior space

They are all delivered and at full capacity.

In addition, Iberia Airport Services continues to invest to be more efficient, safe, more flexible and more environmentally friendly and has just added 2 electrical stairs and 2 extendable belts in our Barcelona airport.

There is already a winner of the Champions League: the Liverpool team. But we can also say that in Iberia we have also won by breaking all the records. Just on Sunday June 2nd, Iberia Airport Services (IBAS) serviced 58 special flights and 11,000 fans returning to their homes in the United Kingdom. And over the weekend, almost 200 additional flights from 13 airlines, including Iberia and Iberia Express were serviced too.

A great operation and a great teamwork with an amazing result.

In Madrid airport the event was coordinated and prepared in advance among IBAS, AENA and customer airlines. Over the Champions weekend, this airport has dealt with more than 20,000 passengers of both teams that, for security reasons, were separated into different terminals and airplanes were parked in remote positions.

To realize  ​​the complexity of the operation, our ramp buses have traveled the equivalent distance between MAD and LHR (round trip ) or the equivalent of making 2,000 laps to the Wanda Metropolitan Stadium.

Most of the operations have been concentrated in the early hours of June 2nd, between 02:00 and 07:00 AM. Around 3:00 in the morning, 250 IBAS staff members were dedicated exclusively to this operation. An operation that finished once both teams supporters took off on their way home, with  no incidents and with   OTP of almost 90%

THANKS to all those who have made it possible.

From May 26th to May 29th   the 32nd  International  Ground Handling Conference organized by IATA was held in Madrid .It is an international event that brings together airlines, handling agents and service providers in a relaxed atmosphere of forums, round tables and informal meetings where the present and the future of the Handling sector is discussed. Iberia participated as hostess and assumed a prominent role, with the presence of Luis Gallego in the welcome speech where he commented: “In Iberia we invest for ramp of the future with our Go Up project: 130 initiatives aimed at digitizing processes, developing our activity to tailor our customers, empowering the large traffic distribution centers (hubs) where we are and, at the same time, implementing a new company culture that increases the commitment of our staff, where employees have a key role in the future of the business, in safety, in the of equipment care and in innovation “.

Nick Careen, Senior Vice President of IATA, Airport, Passengers, Cargo and Safety, said: “The Handling sector must continue moving towards global standards consistently applied as the only route to ground operations safe and efficient “.

Different officials from IBAS attended the event among them, the commercial team participated and scheduled meetings with their customers and potential new ones to offer them solutions to their needs. Other colleagues participated in panels and debated on our commitment to minimize environmental impact of out GSE fleet. We also met different suppliers to discuss about the new technologies applicable to the handling sector in our continuous effort to become a reference in innovation and safety.

From Iberia Airport Services we set up information panels in our terminals throughout the weekend to ease the delegates’ passage through the airport at arrival, so they were able to check the quality of our work.

On April 28th, we celebrated the International Day for Safety and Health at Work, in a year in which the International Labor Organization (ILO), who promotes this commemoration, celebrates 100 years.

For this reason, Iberia Airport Services launched a communication campaign under the motto “With security, every day is the first day”. This leitmotiv reminds us that, in terms of our safety, the one of our colleagues and our tools of work, we must be alert and very aware of it.

Before doing any work, observe what risks you face, analyze what you can do to control them and act safely following the procedures. This behavior will lead us to avoid accidents.

On 25 March Iberia Airport Services (IBAS) coordinated a very special operation involving the shipment of four dolphins to their new home in the Rancho Texas Lanzarote Park in the Canary Islands.

To give them the best possible living conditions there is a programme called RAZA in which dolphins in captivity are placed in the environments most suitable to their characteristics.

Under this programme the bottlenose dolphin Rocco, a 7-year-old alpha male in the southern Spanish city of Malaga, was covered with a special grease to prevent dehydration of his skin. He was carried on a soaking wet foam bed and accompanied by two veterinarians during the entire journey.

The aircraft took him first to the Eastern coastal city of Alicante, where another  three dolphins were picked up to be taken to the same destination. A group of IBAS employees was on hand to carry out the transfers under the watchful eye of the veterinarians, who constantly monitored the heartbeats of the precious cargo.

Each carrying vessel weighed 1,800 kilos, and water was sprayed on the dolphins continuously during the trip.

The dolphins landed safely on the island of Lanzarote and are now adapting to their new environment.

Congratulations to the airport teams in Malaga and Alicante for their successful operations. IBAS is proud to be trusted with such delicate tasks!

In 2019, we continue promoting new initiatives within the Equipment Awareness and Conservation Plan (PCC).
In order to do so, on February 27th we gathered in a workshop our more experienced and skillful staff in the use and maintenance of GSE equipment.
As stated by María Ángeles Rubio Alfayate, our Director of Airport Services and Development: “with these workshops we want to continue promoting a ” greener handling”, being more efficient, impulsing our Safety culture and, of course, a closer communication with employees”.
We ended the venue thanking all of them for participating and making our ground handling more efficient every day!