How Digital Thermometers are Assisting the Aviation Industry

How Digital Thermometers are Assisting the Aviation Industry

If there is something we are all too familiar with when it comes to flying, it’s passing through tests. Security tests to see if we have anything in our pockets, immigration tests to see if we have the right visa, and even tests to see if we are transporting suspicious objects in our luggage. However, passengers need to prepare themselves for a new kind of test the next time they travel – temperature tests.

Why is temperature important?

Temperature, or a rise in body temperature, has been proven to be a telltale sign of the body fighting off infectious diseases. Without diving into complicated medical explanations, part of the immune system’s response to repealing foreign agents is to start a sweltering fever. Sometimes the rise in body temperature is the only symptom of a virus and may alert medical authorities that something is wrong long before the patient comes in contact with other members of the public.

This has become especially noticeable during the current COVID-19 crisis. A higher body temperature is one of the cornerstone signatures of the coronavirus, along with dry coughing, tiredness, and other flu-like symptoms.

“If you’ve got a fever, then you might have COVID-19, but if you don’t have a fever, it doesn’t mean that you don’t have it,” said Australian Royal Australian College of General Practitioners, Dr. Harry Nespolon, to the ABC.

When it comes to aviation, it is vital that no one with a fever enters an aircraft, to protect the passengers and crew on board as well as prevent the virus from spreading beyond the local hot spot.

“In terms of screening customers to make sure, for example, that you don’t have someone getting on the airplane that has a fever. I think that’s going to be very important.”Gary Kelly, CEO of Southwest Airlines told CNBC.

A fever is typically reported as any temperature over 37 degrees Celcius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit) and can be detected by contactless thermometers and infrared scanners.

What is a contactless thermometer?

To the uninitiated, you may not know the difference between standard temperature thermometers and a digital contactless one.

The first significant difference is the contactless nature of the digital thermometer. When using it for biosecurity screening, it doesn’t have to touch any part of the skin to read an accurate temperature. It can be held around two feet away (well outside of social distancing of two meters) and read the surface temperature of the skin using a laser. This distance not only protects the thermometer user, but also prevents cross-contamination between passengers due to the fact that passengers do not come into contact with the same thermometer.

Digital thermometers are also faster and quicker than traditional tools, allowing passengers and other crew members to return to their duties after a simple temperature check. Most devices are easy to use and don’t require any medical knowledge to interpret the results.

How will it assist air travel?

The importance of temperature checks is obvious, and if there is one item to add to the growing grocery list of preventative measures (such as using Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), sanitizing, and handwashing), it’s digital thermometers.

Some airlines have already initiated temperature checks as part of their essential screening for their operations.

“The health and safety of everyone flying Frontier is paramount, and temperature screenings add an additional layer of protection for everyone on board,” said the United States Frontier Airlines CEO Barry Biffle. “[This] will serve to provide Frontier customers an assurance that their well-being is our foremost priority, and we are taking every measure to help them travel comfortably and safely.”

Other airlines in the United States are pushing for temperature checks and screening to be a critical cornerstone of coronavirus prevention, and be done by airport security.

“As all screening processes for the traveling public are the responsibility of the U.S. government, having temperature checks performed by the TSA will ensure that procedures are standardized, providing consistency across airports so that travelers can plan appropriately,” Airlines for America said recently in a release.

The best way that airlines and airports can use this technology is:

  • Screen every passenger entering the airport and/or as they board each flight. This will ensure that no one boards a confined aircraft with a fever.
  • For airlines, it is important to check crew members as well as other staff who enter the aircraft. Because the virus can exist on surfaces for longer time periods, you need to ensure that no infected ground staff enter the plane and contaminate the environment.
  • Every temperature should be logged to ensure no liability on the part of the crew or the airline. If needed, temperature records can be handled over authorities to help facilitate contact tracing.

Are there disadvantages of this technology?

Alas, despite temperature checks and contactless thermometers being incredibly useful tools, there are some limitations.

The technology cannot detect the coronavirus, and it is completely possible that someone who detects a high reading might be infected with a different, less deadly virus like a cold, or is just hot (thus why we recommend scanning passengers after they have been in a cooler environment first).

Additionally, 10-30% of all coronavirus carriers simply don’t show any fever symptoms. They are infectious but have a normal temperature. Thus biosecurity staff need to ensure they also look for other symptoms such as coughing and tiredness, as well as if the traveler is wearing proper protective equipment.

Lastly, the contactless thermometer measures surface temperatures, not core body temperatures. It can be a bit of a challenge to get an accurate body temperature of someone who is wrapped up and has their face covered.

Are they part of the necessary equipment to fight COVID-19?

Nevertheless, as shown in this article, digital thermometers are a must-have for airports and airlines. They assist in stopping the spread of the virus by helping officials or crew to quickly and easily identify high-risk passengers. These contactless devices form part of the equipment essential to the relaunch of full operational activity in a post-COVID environment.

Eways Aviation has secured a supply of essential contactless thermometers, and stand ready to facilitate airports and airlines with this technology. Be sure to get in touch today to add this tool to your anti-coronavirus arsenal.

How The Coronavirus Has Affected Our World

How The Coronavirus Has Affected Our World

Few industries have been hit harder by the Coronavirus pandemic than the aviation industry, with many airlines reporting a decrease of 99% in business. But the aviation industry isn’t isolated, and the current lack of affordable air travel and air freight has had a significant knock-on effect on other industries. How have they been affected, and what is the actual cost of the Coronavirus?

Here is a brief summary of some of the hardest-hit areas.

Tourism

First, how can anyone travel on holiday without aircraft?

Tourism was one of the first industries to suffer thanks to the Coronavirus, with many people canceling their holidays well before the virus spread across the world (tourism arrivals dropped by 22% in the first three months in 2020). While airline refunds dominated the headlines, it was underreported how many hotels, theme parks, cruise ships, and more also had to refund customer bookings.

As planned travel decreased, many locations that rely on the tourist trade (such as popular destinations like Mexico, Bali, Thailand, Orlando, Paris, Greece, Vietnam, etc.) found themselves without a vital source of what is usually a steady income. Asia and the Pacific islands were amongst some of the worst hit, losing 35% of all tourism in only three months. Tourism infrastructure that was under construction (or planned for), has been delayed or scrapped as the industry expects to take years to recover.

Ironically, one particular business saw a massive payday due to the fact that it has been taking out pandemic insurance for the last thirty years. Wimbledon, the famous tennis event, has made pandemic insurance a mainstay of its insurance coverage and was finally able to cash it in. 

eCommerce

eCommerce, an industry that normally makes $3.46 trillion per year, has taken a massive hit on two fronts.

The first was the shut down of businesses and factories across the world. Despite the availability of online shopping, and numerous consumers with displosable income due to restrictions on certain activities (such as going out for dinner and/or a movie), many eCommerce outlets have been unable to find products to complete consumer orders. Even large companies like Apple are expecting delays as their flagship iPhone production line grounded to a halt for over a month. 

The second aspect is the lack of cargo transport. While best efforts have been made by cargo carriers and airlines, there is still an outrageous amount of demand that has yet to be fulfilled. Major airlines like Qantas, American Airlines, and British Airways are now operating barebones operations (Qantas isn’t even flying internationally) and thus the freight capacity of their vast networks has practically vanished. This has led to major shipping delays (AliExpress, a popular online store is now rejecting refunds for undelivered products) and increased freight costs (up to 27%) ruling some eCommerce businesses unviable.

Companies might have the products in warehouses and customers to buy them, but they are struggling to deliver these orders.

Research and development

Research and development of new technologies took a big hit in 2020 thanks to the Coronavirus. Unable to meet at forums, speaking engagements, or attend institutions for learning (international students have all been sent home) has massively decreased the forward pace of humanity. One report estimated that up to 14,000 researcher jobs won’t be created thanks to the virus, stripping away business activity and restricting movement.

Positive stories do exist of the medical world coming together to find a solution to this runaway pathogen. Still, other areas have been set back years, as critical knowledge can’t be created and shared.

Non-profit and charities

With less money in circulation, charities and other non-profits have been hit by the Coronavirus.

“With the current situation unfolding globally, millions of jobs are potentially at risk and vital services are in desperate need of funding to be able to continue supporting vulnerable communities,” said Ronni Kahn AO, OzHarvest founder, and CEO,

“We can stop events. We can stop sporting matches. We can close schools. We can make changes in the way businesses operate. But we cannot stop feeding people.  The knock-on effect of not being able to deliver food is huge.” 

Unfortunately, charities are the first firms to lose funding during lean times, forced to downsize and forgo altruistic activities. Ironically, their activities are some of the most essential in returning the world to normal, as they provide aid in developing regions against COVID-19 and help funnel emergency medical supplies around the globe.

Entertainment and film

The film industry in Hollywood (and around the world) has effectively been completely shut down, putting thousands out of jobs, hitting hundreds of thousands in related sectors (cinemas, TV channels), and depriving millions of a classic mainstay of human culture.

To put this in perspective, James Cameron recently hired an entire Boeing 787 to fly himself and his crew to New Zealand (one of the only places in the world allowing film production as they have beaten the virus) to continue work on the Avatar series. This blockbuster franchise has plenty of money, but many other studios don’t, and the world is less for it.

Expect to see fewer movies and tv shows next year thanks to this three to a six-month gap, and even fewer appearing on our inflight screens.

Conclusion

The bottom line is that the coronavirus impact has decimated a wide range of industries, from mom & pop corner stores to big Hollywood productions. The coronavirus pandemic could cost the global economy between $5.8tn and $8.8tn, according to Asian Development Bank (ADB). But not all is lost, working together the world can return to business and we in aviation can get back to doing what we do best, enabling capital to traverse the world to make the things we love.

If you want help in returning to business or want to know the essential COVID-19 equipment you need, get in touch with Eways Aviation today.

Africa’s Missing Link In Private Aviation

Africa’s Missing Link In Private Aviation

Private aviation may be a future solution for firms facing Africa’s geographical challenges and struggling with missing links in the commercial airline network. Instead of spending hours, if not days transferring through regional airports, companies might turn to private charter aircraft to overcome limitations and fuel commerce on the continent.

What is the missing link in Africa aviation?

Africa is a vast, beautiful continent home to diverse mixed economies, peoples, and cultures. Because of the scales and scopes involved, many firms find tackling or expanding in the region more challenging that the more hemoglobin markets of North America and Asia. An issue many companies run into during their exploration is the lack of unified commercial airline networks and availability of point-to-point routes. In fact, some destinations in Africa are not even linked through hubs in the region, with passengers having to travel first to overseas hubs like Dubai.

For example, one of the more prominent airlines in Africa, Ethiopian Airlines does have some gaps in its network across the continent. Thus many of those flying in Africa find themselves flying through hub airports (waiting hours if not a day for a connecting flight), even though their final destination might be only a few hours away as the crow flies. An example of this might be Dodoma in Tanzania, to Cape Town, South Africa.

private africa

The route map of Ethiopian Airlines. Notice that all flights head through its hub airport.

This lack of point-to-point routes has a rolling effect on cargo transport and freight delivery as well. For some businesses, such as the mining industry, time is money. If a machine breaks down and the replacement parts need to be routed through several hubs, it can end up costing the firm millions in lost revenue as machinery and team members wait around.

What is the solution?

One of the solutions to this problem is private aviation.

By chartering a private aircraft like a small jet or turboprop, a group of travelers can cut down their travel time significantly and traverse to somewhat remote locations. Private planes can offer cheaper travel per seat (compared to sending an executive team in commercial business class) and save time by removing any layovers (anywhere from a few hours to one or two days).

There are commercial benefits as well. Team members will be able to focus on work, conduct meetings, and remain productive during the trip, and the removal of hotel stays will reduce the stress of traveling. Plus, who can deny the pleasure of taking off five minutes after arriving at an airport and returning whenever you like.

When you factor in the scale of the journey and the lack of fast rail or inter-continental highways (ruling out trains and cars), private aviation is a clear winner.

“If you have a requirement for an NGO or an entrepreneur or a government agency to be able to conduct its business, the options of using rail or a good highway are simply not there,” said African Business Aviation Association (AfBAA) chairman Tarek Ragheb.So for the growth of the continent, there must be an ultra-efficient means of travel, and that is where business aviation could come in.”

Private aircraft are not just limited to long-range jet aircraft. Smaller prop planes are capable of landing at lower, more remote landing strips that commercial aircraft (employed by big airlines) can’t fly to. Thus, not only does private aviation offer the solution to the limitations of the airline hub and spoke model (offering point-to-point travel), it also dramatically expands the destinations beyond significant population centers.

Unfortunately, the market in Africa for private aircraft is still budding, and the current supply of flexible aircraft doesn’t meet the demand.

How big is the private aviation market in Africa?

When you compared the private aviation market in Africa to other markets, the difference is striking.

 

Private aviation

The number of private jets owned by individuals in 2017. Via Statistica.

Africa trails behind all other regions in the world, and even behind some individual countries. The United States has nearly 22,000 private jets, Brazil and Mexico with approx 1,500 apiece, and even behind the small island of Great Britain with 502 aircraft.

“As of 2018, there were 481 registered private jets in Africa, and the continent’s year-on-year business aviation growth was 44%” – Philip du Preez, ExecuJet Africa’s Group general manager to Business Traveller Africa.

But this market is set to grow. Africa is the world’s richest region in terms of raw materials, from gold to platinum, to common minerals and natural gas. The jump to unlock this wealth is driving private jet travel, with some private aviation firms recording passenger bookings doubling year on year.

“It is well known that African economies are strengthening, and consequently, the need for aviation to support this growth will drive the need for more aviation professionals,” says Dawit Lemma, CEO of Addis Ababa-based Krimson Aviation in the same article.

Tourism has also been a growth market, with foreign and domestic tourists choosing to fly directly to remote destinations to explore the undistributed beauty of Africa.

Even private jet manufactures, such as Bombardier and Embraer, estimate that the number of private aircraft in Africa will jump up to 1200 planes in the next ten years.

“Africa is an emerging market where we see a positive future,” said Robert Habjanic, sales director at plane manufacturer Bombardier Business Aircraft to CNN in 2012. “Over the next 20 years, we do forecast 810 business jets to be sold into Africa.”

Bottom line: Is private aviation right for you?

Private aviation is not just the realm of international conglomerates with investors, and stakeholders based in New York’s Wall St or Headquartered in Bejing. Local small and medium businesses will not only find the flexibility of private aircraft (and the ability to open underdeveloped markets) useful, but advantageous as a competitive edge against other industry players. The advantage of private aircraft access, has not yet been taken up by most and is currently a well-kept secret of Africa’s fastest-growing companies.

In summary, the advantages are:

  • Direct point-to-point travel, saving time and transfer costs.
  • Choosing when to fly, and having the ability to rapidly dispatch materials and expertise.
  • Access to new markets not yet developed by the competition.

Thus while private aviation is the transport solution for firms, there is the current problem of availability. With so few operators spread over the continent, without an expert in your corner it can be a scramble to book aircraft when you need them. Let Eways Aviation be your aviation partner and a reputable source of aircraft for your voyages across Africa and into the Middle East.

How Much Does It Cost To Have An Aircraft On Ground (AOG)?

How Much Does It Cost To Have An Aircraft On Ground (AOG)?

Airlines fear no three words more than ‘Aircraft On Ground’ (AOG). When your aircraft is grounded, it cannot operate revenue-generating flights and becomes nothing more than a gigantic paperweight. But how much does it cost?

How much does AOG cost an airline?

For those who don’t speak the typical aviation lingo, AOG is a condition in which an aircraft requires urgent maintenance and cannot fly. Hence, it is trapped on the ground. Airlines will take immediate action to try and restore the aircraft to working conditions, flying in spare parts from around the world and rostering qualified aircraft engineers to repair the plane as soon as possible.

Otherwise, the aircraft will remain on the ground, causing delays and loss of potential revenue. A study concluded by the FAA found that AOG flight delays in 2007 ended up costing the aviation industry $31 billion US. Enough for 62 brand new Airbus A380s at list prices.

Various factors need to be taken into account when determining the actual cost of AOG:

  • Location of the aircraft on the ground (is it remote or at a major airport?)
  • Location and availability of spare parts
  • Logistics network to deliver the spare parts
  • Availability of engineers to work on the aircraft
  • Skill level of the aviation engineers
  • Time to implement all of the above

But what does this mean if we convert it into real-world dollars?

An average aircraft lease will be around $60,000 up to half a million US dollars, depending on the age and the model of the aircraft. For the sake of simplicity, we will say around $200,000 US per month for the lease of an Airbus A320. This would mean a cost of $6451 per day. This is just the cost to lease the aircraft, and does not include fuel or operational expenses.

If the aircraft is on the ground, then you will be paying $6451 per day for every day that it is not flying. A maintenance check will take around 120-150 hours or up to three days to find the problem, order the parts, and then install them when they arrive. If your operation is based in the United States, this will cost around $50.39 per hour (based on average wages provided by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics). One hundred fifty hours x 50.39 is $51,300 US for the maintenance.

But what about the costs of spare parts? Another report based on the average AOG incidences in the Middle East showed that the average part cost was $8,785.36 US per event.

Combining all of these numbers:

  • Aircraft lease – 3 days – $19,354
  • Maintenance wage – 3 days – $51,300
  • Spare parts – $8,785.36
  • Total cost – $79,440.29

That is assuming that the aircraft only costs that amount, that it only takes three days, and that the spare parts are not delayed in arrival. While an airline might get a handle on these costs through having a plentiful supply of tools, a crack team of engineers, and even some backup spare parts, they won’t have the benefits of a dedicated AOG team on standby ready to deliver as soon as possible.

Of course, AOG incidences will have more impact in remote regions and emerging countries, where delivery can be an issue as it can take longer to deliver the parts.

Also, remember that these numbers don’t take into consideration the amount of business lost while the aircraft is in AOG.

What are the benefits of an AOG service provider?

Knowing the actual costs, working with a dedicated 24/7 AOG Desk is invaluable. Moreover, if you’re an airline working in developing countries, it’s mandatory to get AOG Desks with experience in emerging markets (Africa, South America, parts of Asia…). With the confidence that any AOG impact will be minimalized, carriers can focus on what they do best and leave the ticking clocks to those who can get it done. If you want to improve your AOG response or wish to consult with AOG experts, consider getting in touch with Eways Aviation today.

What Airports Need To Return To Service

What Airports Need To Return To Service

The Boeing 787 dreamliner, the latest edition for Kenya Airways, parked at Jomo Kenyatta airport in Nairobi, Kenya

As the worldwide lockdown slowly lifts, airports will need to prepare themselves for a return to operations. However, it won’t be business as usual, and airports will need to reevaluate what is needed for operations in this post-COVID-19 world. 

One of the most prominent parallels of airports returning to business, is how airports came back online following the devastating September 9/11 attacks. Airports across the globe instituted new security checkpoints and protocols, to ensure that this tragedy couldn’t be repeated. 

Airports will need to re-evaluate their biosecurity measures, and implement a variety of precautionary measures to combat the spread of coronavirus. Proper implementation of these measures, will also help to increase passenger confidence. 

What steps does an airport need to take?

Airports should consider investing in technology, infrastructure, and essential medical supplies as preventative measures. These measures could include:

  • Temperature checks at immigration for any arriving passengers, and temperature checks at airport entryways. 
  • A good supply of PPE (personal protection equipment) materials for staff and ground crew. 
  • Sanitizer stations for crew and passengers to clean hands. All passengers entering the airport should be required to sanitize their hands. 
  • Education for ground crew and staff on how to prevent pathogens, and how to detect the symptoms of a Covid-19 infected person. 
  • Social distancing within terminals and during boarding.

“Today, the resumption of activities are on the horizon, [airports and airlines] must quickly purchase biosecurity protection against the spread of Covid19 to ensure the health safety of passengers, crews, and ground staff.” – Eways Aviation Strategic Director Alain Tchale.

How are some airports implementing these ideas?

Some airports have already come back online, and have rolled out several new technologies to combat the spread of the coronavirus.

Qatar’s Doha’s Hamad International Airport (HIA) has opted to use the latest PPE technology: key personnel are equipped with full face-covering helmets that have built-in infrared scanners. This allows staff to check passenger temperatures while still maintaining social distance. In addition, the airport has also deployed autonomous cleaning robots that use UV light to disinfect highly trafficked areas of the terminals every fifteen minutes. This same UV light is also utilised in special tunnels that disinfect any incoming or outgoing baggage.

Robot Covid

A cleaning robot at Qatar’s Doha airport on patrol.

Although Qatar’s technological measures may seem the way forward for airports, more low-tech solutions are being deployed in other locations. In Addis Ababa, Bole International Airport has become ground zero for the fight against the virus in Africa. Airport staff have therefore taken the necessary steps to maintain critical operations, facilitating the transport of medical teams and supplies, across the continent.

Working with Ethiopian Airlines, the airport has implemented a biosecurity security system for staff that includes the use of gloves, masks, and disinfectants to keep facilities sanitized. In addition to this, staff have been educated regarding social distancing, handwashing and proper hygiene (surprisingly one of the most effective steps in combating the virus).

So far, we have used more than half a million each (gloves and masks) and we have more than 300,000 each in our stock so that there is no shortage,” a spokesperson for Ethiopian Airlines confirmed.

How can Eways Aviation help?

Eways Aviation is ready to help airports reopen by supplying medical materials (such as masks, gloves, and temperature scanners) exclusively for airports and airlines. Airports won’t compete with governments, businesses, or hospitals for these essential materials, and can be confident that they are being supplied with the highest medical grade equipment possible. 

Eways Aviation has an exemplary delivery track record. With its existing worldwide supply chain and established PPE supplies network, Eways Aviation is able to quickly deliver these essential products to airports – no matter how remote or how inaccessible their location is. 

For a full list of our special ‘Airport Operation’  covid19 products, please click here.

How Are Airline Masks Made?

How Are Airline Masks Made?

Eways Aviation masks factoryEways Aviation had the privilege of going behind the scenes and showcasing the manufacturing process for our personal protection equipment that we supply to airlines.

Aviation respirators for COVID-19

One of the cornerstones of the Eways Aviation product catalog is the professional and airline spec KN95 Professional Protective Mask. The Mask can block up to 95% of all harmful particles, as well as bacterial, dust, and droplets.

This product has been specifically designed with airlines in mind, and meets the exceptional quality standard that our customers have come to expect from Eways Aviation. The masks are available in packs of ten units; which is perfect for the cabin crew of a small passenger jet, as well as larger crews where more packs can be purchased.

For specifics, our KN95 / FFP2 masks are certified EN 149:2001 + A1: 2009 related to CE Directive (s). R2016/425 (Personal Protective Equipment).

Mask FFP2 KN95

Mask Eqays

Eways Aviation can supply large quantities of COVID-19 respirators.

The masks can also be given out to passengers when they board or be an auxiliary extra available for purchase in regions that do not have high rates of COVID-19.

Where are the masks made?

The masks are made in a partner facility in Shenzhen, China. As you can see from the photos taken during our visit, the entire fabrication site is classified as a ‘clean area’ – staff wear protective gear and work in a sterilized environment during production. This ensures that the final product is clean, safe, and ready to use at a moment’s notice.

How can you order?

Contact covid19@eways-aviation.com and get a quote. Please note that Minimum Order Quantity is 10.000 masks and that lead time is between 3 to 7 days.

For more information, click on this banner:

What else does Eways Aviation supply?

Eways Aviation has a full suite of COVID-19 equipment available for airlines, ready to deploy at a moment’s notice throughout our worldwide networks of partners. Key items include:

  • FDA approved surgical masks and N95 respirator masks.
  • Infra-red Digital Thermometers.
  • Antibacterial Disposal Gel (75% Alcohol).
  • Full bodysuit protective coveralls (including gloves and safety glasses).

You can consult the full catalog of our Covid19 products here: https://www.eways-aviation.com/en/covid-19/

Employees in Shenzhen China making Eways Aviation Masks

Employees in Shenzhen China making Eways Aviation Masks

 

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