Trials of autonomous baggage dolly to begin at CVG

Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) in the US is set to become the latest gateway to trial Aurrigo’s autonomous Auto-Dolly baggage tug.

The trial at CVG is being conducted in collaboration with International Airlines Group (IAG) – the parent company of British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus, Vueling and LEVEL – and the US airport.

“As one of the fastest-growing passenger and cargo hubs in the US and globally, CVG is always looking for innovative technologies to improve capacity and efficiency,” said CVG CEO, Candace McGraw.

“We look forward to working with Aurrigo and IAG to identify potential solutions to help address many of the issues that aviation currently faces: staffing shortages, safety, capacity and environmental concerns, among others.”

While UK based Aurrigo’s CEO, professor David Keene, enthused: “This partnership is an important milestone for us as it will be our first aviation operation in the USA – a key target market.

“This year we will have our autonomous vehicles operating at airports in the UK, Europe, Asia and now the US, showing the clear demand there is in the aviation sector for our technology.

“We’re pleased to be partnering with IAG beyond the UK and to be building a presence at a key international airport. We are demonstrating vehicles that are designed from the ground up to be electric and autonomous to provide substantial efficiency improvements in future ground handling operations.”

If all goes to plan, the Auto-Dolly trials will start at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport this Spring.

Aurrigo notes that ground-breaking technology such as this, brings collaboration across public and private sector, from the airport, airline and ground handlers integrating the technology to the region that it will benefit.

“As the Birthplace of Aviation, Ohioans are quick to welcome new technologies that improve air travel,” said Ohio Governor, Mike DeWine.

“The world is better connected to Greater Cincinnati than ever before, and Aurrigo’s decision to test their first autonomous baggage dollies in the United States at CVG will advance the airport’s efficiencies and strengthen the region’s economic competitiveness.”

On its website, Aurrigo states that Auto-DollyTug® is an all-electric, autonomous vehicle that combines the utility of a baggage tractor, with the ULD (Unit Load device) carrying capability of an airport dolly all in one, making a more flexible and space efficient vehicle.

It says: “This means that a combination of an Auto-DollyTug® towing three trailers can carry four ULDs, which is 30% more than a traditional tug set-up of the same overall length. The technology incorporates robotic arms on the body, allowing the vehicle to autonomously load and unload a ULD itself, for a truly end-to-end autonomous operation.”

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