Changi Airport plans to introduce a new simulator next month that will better train its workers on operating an aerobridge.
Using virtual reality, it will cut down the training time needed on actual aerobridges by 25 per cent, thus freeing them up for more planes to use, said Changi Airport Group (CAG) yesterday.
It will give trainees hands-on experience in manoeuvring a replica of an aerobridge as well as make it convenient for them to practise what they would need to do on an actual aerobridge, said Mr Sunny Yang, CAG's associate general manager of airside management.
Aerobridge operators have to connect this covered link between an arriving plane and the terminal for passengers to use to board and disembark from the plane. They also have to respond to problems arising from its use.
Currently, all aerobridges are used during the morning and evening peak air traffic periods.
And since an aerobridge has to be booked for a few hours for the practical training, the lessons have to be stretched over several days.
With the simulator, trainees can practise without access to a real aerobridge. The system can also be customised to train them to handle various scenarios such as rainy weather or different plane types.
But the trainees will still be required to spend time practising on an actual aerobridge, and will have to pass their proficiency test on the physical facility.
The simulator was jointly developed by CAG and local firm Aviation Virtual since late last year. CAG declined to disclose the cost.
It was developed to optimise the training of aerobridge operators, said Mr Yang, as demand for such skills is set to grow with Changi Airport potentially handling about 150 million passengers yearly after the construction of Terminal 5 is completed around 2030.