Changi Airport has started rolling out heightened safety measures as it prepares for travel to gradually resume.
New contactless and cleaning technology sit at the centre of the passenger experience, with automated kiosks and proximity sensors currently being installed to eliminate the need for travellers to touch electronic screens during check-in or bag drop-off.
Used for the first time in any airport, pioneering infrared sensors will enable passengers to select options and key in travel details by pointing their finger close to the screen without touching it. For those who need to check-in at manned counters, acrylic screens will provide a safe barrier between passengers and staff.
The contactless experience will also extend to immigration. The Immigration & Checkpoints Authority has upgraded the airport’s automated immigration lanes with a new biometric system that uses face and iris recognition technology as the main way to check identity. This replaces fingerprint scanning.
Technology is also being embraced to clean and disinfect the airport’s terminals. Cleaning robots have been upgraded with a nozzle that sprays a light disinfecting mist for added protection on carpets and floors.
As part of its measures, Changi Airport Group (CAG) is currently testing the use of ultraviolet-C LEDs to disinfect escalator and travellator handrails. A trial is also being carried out on the use of contactless infrared technology for lifts, where passengers hover their finger over a button to activate it.
These innovations are in addition to previously introduced measures that include temperature screening, use of masks by all passengers and staff, sensor-activated hand sanitiser throughout the airport and long-lasting antimicrobial spray on frequently touched surfaces.
Tan Lye Teck, CAG’s executive vice president for airport management, said: “Passengers will expect airports to deliver the highest standards of safety and hygiene to give them peace of mind during their journey, and we will rapidly bring on board new measures as we go into a new normal for air travel.”