Airbus Demonstrates Automated Taxiing Vehicle at VivaTech

At VivaTech, Europe's largest technology event, Airbus will showcase a unique vehicle: a truck equipped with A350 controls.
At VivaTech, Europe's largest technology event, Airbus will showcase a unique vehicle: a truck equipped with A350 controls.

Airbus is showcasing an innovative vehicle at VivaTech, Europe’s largest technology event – a truck equipped with basic A350 airliner controls. 

The company aims to demonstrate how automated taxiing can enhance airport safety amidst growing concerns over ground collisions involving jetliners.

Automated Taxiing System:

The converted electric truck, displayed at VivaTech, offers two modes of operation: manual driving or control by aircraft systems. 

Sensors monitor warning lines and obstacles while onboard computers guide the vehicle to a designated location, managing acceleration and braking as necessary.

Critical Use Cases:

Matthieu Gallas, head of automation research at Airbus UpNext, the company’s innovation lab, emphasized the complexity and critical nature of these use cases compared to those in the automotive industry. He stated, “Copying and pasting technology already available on the market won’t work.”

Safety Concerns:

While Airbus refrains from directly linking the research to specific accidents, recent incidents like the Tokyo collision between a landing A350 and a Coast Guard plane have raised concerns. 

Airbus did not comment on the Tokyo incident, which is under investigation. Another investigation was launched after a wingtip of an empty Virgin Atlantic jet collided with a stationary British Airways jet. 

In February, U.S. regulators announced an investigation into a collision between two JetBlue planes at Boston Logan.

Demonstration at VivaTech:

Airbus intends for the vehicle to illustrate how automation can safely navigate congested airports, where maneuvering $100-million-plus jets is increasingly challenging. 

The demonstration at VivaTech aims to showcase automation’s potential in addressing safety concerns and improving efficiency in airport operations.

James Adam

James Adam, a noted business writer for CEO Times Magazine, specializes in insightful industry analysis and executive profiles. Known for his clear, concise style, James offers readers an expert perspective on global business trends and market dynamics.

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