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Baggage handling at airports: quality requirements will continue to increase

When we travel by plane it is quite common for many passengers to try to avoid having to check their luggage. There are different reasons for this, but the main ones are these four:

  • Avoid paying the billing cost that is not included in the low cost ticket price.
  • Reduce waiting times in the baggage claim area
  • Prevent our suitcase, or its contents from deteriorating at its destination
  • Prevent the loss of our luggage in transport movements from origin to destination.

Focusing on these last two points, we ask ourselves:

  • Travel our luggage safely?
  • What quality system guarantees that will arrive at our destination correctly?

From the time you check in your bag at the airport check-in counter to pick up at destination, our luggage can travel more than 3 km between rollers and conveyor belts within automated baggage handling systems.

Baggage management at airports in a complex system.


To get an idea of the importance of quality systems and control of baggage movements, The airport Adolfo Suarez Madrid-Barajas there are more than 135 km of conveyor belts, some can reach 40 km/h . Last year it manage almost 19 million bags, it requires high capacity and control of automated baggage handling systems. In airports such as Los Angeles, London or Beijing, the levels of demand in management is higher.

The quality requirements of these automated systems increase due to three reasons:

  • The increase in the number of passengers and therefore the number of suitcases and luggage.
  • Increase in the number of arrival and departure operations.
  • The quality requirements of the companies to face the claims of the users
  • Increase the security of all operations

There are quality certifications for these SATA, as the certification in quality of service in automated baggage transport systems and advanced baggage inspection systems. This requires the implementation of quality control and measurement points and monitoring by the certifying entity.

One of the demands that most concern, minimize the number of lost luggage , in this aspect the use of RFID(radiofrequency identifier) tags has been implemented, which allows you to locate a suitcase without reading the code with diverters in conveyor systems.

In the loss or delay in receiving luggage they play a very important role, the transports between the cargo cabin of the plane and the airport, or between different planes in the flight transfers.

It is one of the most delicate points and the most difficult to control, since they are mostly carried out by personnel of the airline companies or by external companies, outside the airport.

Another quality requirement is related to the energy efficiency of the entire automated baggage handling system, the maximum optimization of movements, stops, and start-up.

To certify this efficiency, the implementation of an ISO 50001 energy management system is required.

Carry out baggage handling and treatment at airport; you require the highest quality of automated baggage handling systems at airports. The increasing volume both in number of passengers and number of daily flights demands a high level of efficiency and maximum quality, in the entire design, manufacturing, assembly and implementation process of the automated baggage handling system.

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