A hub airport making the aviation industry smarter

(Xinhua) 09:11, April 12, 2022

An ARJ21 jetliner passes a water gate at the Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport in Chongqing, southwest China, Nov. 10, 2020. (Xinhua/Liu Chan)

CHONGQING, April 11 (Xinhua) -- Digitalization is reshaping every aspect of people's lives, including their travel. A hub airport in southwest China's Chongqing Municipality is becoming smarter thanks to its persistent efforts in exploring digitalization.

A key part of China's Chengdu-Chongqing economic circle, Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport eyes to create a smart airport by generating power from new digital technologies, said the airport.

Smart digital technology is playing unique roles in China's high-quality growth especially in the civil aviation industry, demonstrating the country's economic resilience despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Chongqing, a mountain city renowned for its spicy cuisine, is a major high-tech industry cluster and the world's leading laptop production base. A smarter airport will greatly help to sustain the growth of the city and the economic circle, as well as their connection with the rest of the country and the world, said the airport.

Passengers at Chongqing airport can enjoy a more comfort and efficient travel experience with diverse services, such as smart parking, self-service clearance and paperless boarding, with full 5G signal coverage.

Alongside the widespread use of digital payment found across China, the airport has introduced a smart parking charge service, which allows drivers to pay their parking charge instantaneously upon their departure.

Drivers just need to pre-register their car plates and electronic payment information. They can then drive off the airport parking lot directly with the digital payment complete.

Aside from the popular paperless boarding, passengers at the airport can also enjoy self-service clearance with just three easy steps: producing their documents, completing facial recognition and scanning their fingerprints.

With the self-service clearance based on digital technology, inbound and outbound passengers can complete border exit and entry in as little as 9 seconds, much quicker than using conventional manual checks.

In 2019, before the pandemic outbreak, more than 2 million passengers used the self-service clearance, accounting for around 58.6 percent of all inbound and outbound passengers that year, according to the airport.

In addition, digital technologies have been integrated into all aspects of passengers' experience at the airport, from the self-service luggage check-in and passenger check-in to a smart roadmap at the airport.

An all-cargo aircraft waits to take off at Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport in southwest China's Chongqing, June 26, 2019. (Xinhua/Liu Chan)


China's civil aviation industry will grow smarter with the help of new-generation digital technologies, according to a roadmap issued by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

China is also accelerating the construction of a world-class airport cluster for the development of the Chengdu-Chongqing economic circle. The airport cluster is aiming to be convenient, safe, intelligent, green and highly efficient, said a circular issued by the CAAC.

As a key hub airport in the economic circle, Chongqing airport has already targeted a smarter future, aiming to enhance passenger experience and operation efficiency.

From 2006 to 2019, before the pandemic outbreak, the airport handled more than 10 million passengers annually, remaining one of the top 10 airports nationwide. In 2019, it saw its annual passenger throughput reach 44.79 million, ranking among the top 50 airports globally, showed data from the airport.

To better serve the evolving demands of passengers and cargo transport, starting from 2015, the airport has explored digital transformation in the cargo sector by integrating the collection, storage and loading of cargo into a digital system, said the airport.

The airport has connected its cargo information system with those of the customs, tax and port authorities, as well as those of the airlines. The airport has also greatly enhanced its air cargo capacity.

In addition, its cargo loading has become a paperless operation, which greatly cut labor and running costs.

Furthermore, the express parcel check machine at the airport is capable of carrying out image identification, open parcel operation and other functions, thus greatly supporting the hub airport in enhancing its capacity in parcel delivery.

Being smart is the future of all airports. The Chongqing airport is exploring a path to become smart by effectively using digital technologies, reaching all sectors from airport management to passenger services, said the airport. 

(Web editor: Xia Peiyao, Liang Jun)


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