Frankfurt airport will introduce fully biometric processing for passengers who choose to use it this year through a technology partnership with aviation IT provider Sita and technology and electronics giant NEC.
The biometric system, based on face scanning, is due to be rolled out from check-in to boarding gates at all Frankfurt airport (Fraport) terminals from this spring.
Passengers will be required to enrol at a kiosk or counter and then proceed through automated security and boarding gates via biometric touchpoints scanning their faces.
The technology utilises NEC face-recognition technology and digital-identity management platform integrated with Sita’s ‘Smart Path’ passenger-processing system.
The system will be available to all airlines at Fraport wishing to use it.
In a statement, Sita said: “The project breaks new ground in the development of digital travel by providing a common-use biometric platform at all Fraport terminals.
“It combines day-of-travel enrolment, Star Alliance biometrics, and additional biometric hubs under the umbrella of the Sita Smart Path platform.”
Lufthansa passengers already enrolled in the Star Alliance Biometrics system will have their biometric identities automatically uploaded to the platform with no need to enrol afresh.
Passengers who don’t wish to use the biometric system can check in and proceed through the airport as normal.
The Star Alliance group of 26 airlines plans to roll out biometric passenger processing across its global network.
Fraport executive director for aviation and infrastructure Pierre Dominique Prümm said: “We are excited to be able to transform the experience for our passengers across all terminals and carriers with one simple solution.
“We value that Sita and NEC’s technology allows our infrastructure to be truly future-proof, with the capacity to grow as industry demands and travel patterns shift.”
Sita president for Europe Sergio Colella said: “With this implementation, Fraport is leading the industry in responding to passenger demands for greater autonomy and convenience, while helping to maximize operational efficiencies.”
NEC vice president for advanced recognition systems Jason Van Sice added: “We have a wealth of experience combining our technical know-how with Sita’s understanding of the air transport industry. We applaud Star Alliance’s initiative to bring these benefits to its broader network.”