With the implementation of the Airport Operations Center, Nice Côte d'Azur is managing its overall performance in real time

Published on 03-12-20

Concentrating all the functions related to airport operations – management of passenger flows, baggage, aircraft on stands – and technical equipment maintenance, this ultramodern superstructure, promoted by Eurocontrol, puts Nice Airport among the most advanced airports in Europe with regard to airport operations management through overall performance, making it additionally possible to help air traffic flow more smoothly. Ultimately, the airport’s APOC (Airport Operations Center) will also integrate all the functions linked to airport access management, safety and security.

The APOC (Airport Operations Center) is the most effective and advanced collaborative means of airport operations management, making it possible to both optimise resources and support the development of air traffic, but also take into account all the factors which may disrupt the airport's traffic.

This enormous control station makes it possible, in real time, to exchange information, determine the most relevant solutions, initiate their implementation and verify their effects on all terminals, runways and airport surroundings. For passengers, this close coordination represents on the one hand an additional guarantee of a smooth journey through the airport from the moment they arrive, from check-in to boarding via bag drop or security inspections, and on the other hand more punctual flights. This guarantee is also important to ensure the service provided to customers from the moment they land up to the point that they leave the airport.

In concrete terms, this monitoring system centralises the management of the airport's various resources, such as aircraft stands, passenger boarding bridges, self-service check-in terminals, baggage conveyor belts or car park entrances/exits. It also ensures optimal passenger flows through the airport. Firstly, on the approach to terminals, to facilitate the smooth flow of road traffic or to prevent car park saturation. Furthermore, within terminals, to avoid overcrowding at one of the key points for passengers, most notably inspection points, or too high a concentration of people in a single place to maintain social distancing.

At the slightest sign of equipment failure (lift, door, escalators, parking barrier, etc.), a team can intervene quicker to resolve the problem. In the event of a deteriorated situation, as a result of the weather for example, a shorter decision and command chain facilitate a quicker return to normal.

The implementation of the APOC made it necessary to create a unique, ultra-modern 500 m² facility equipped with dozens of control screens. This required its members to be trained and the position of Airport Duty Manager to be created. The ADM, in a highly orchestrated manner, manages operations and takes decisions in real time thanks to the hypervisor, a unique IT system enabling real-time management of all operations, continuously communicating with partners, airlines, ground-handling agents or security personnel. Established under the impetus of Eurocontrol, extending the already real benefits of the A-CDM implemented this autumn, the APOC, also co-funded by the European Union, puts Nice Côte d’Azur at the heart of Europe's airspace and contributes to its smooth operation.

Having further developed our integration into Europe's airspace with the implementation of our A-CDM in October, we are now fully equipped to support the resumption of air traffic by offering both our partners and passengers the best guarantees regarding our operations management. The gains expected range from better punctuality to smoother passenger flows with, as a common thread, improved safety, especially in terms of health protection,” welcomed Franck Goldnadel, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Aéroports de la Côte d'Azur.