Changi Airport in Singapore to go Passport-Free in 2024

Singapore’s Changi Airport will introduce automated immigration clearance in 2024 which will allow passengers to depart the city-state using only biometric data — no passports required.

“Singapore will be one of the first few countries in the world to introduce automated, passport-free immigration clearance,” Communications Minister Josephine Teo said during a session of parliament in September. Numerous changes to the country’s Immigration Act were passed during the session.

Biometric technology and facial recognition software are already in limited use at Changi Airport at automated lanes at immigration checkpoints. The new advances will “reduce the need for passengers to repeatedly present their travel documents at touch points and allow for more seamless and convenient processing,” Minister Teo said.

Biometrics will be used to create a “single token of authentication” that will be employed at  automated touch like bag drops, immigration clearance and boarding. They will eliminate the need for physical travel documents such as boarding passes and passports, reports say.

Passports will still be required for other countries outside of Singapore that do not offer passport-free clearance, Teo stressed.

NORD DRIVESYSTEMS Offers Efficient Drive Technology for Baggage Handling

Whether check-in, sorting, high-speed-transport or baggage reclaim – NORD DRIVESYSTEMS offers suitable drive solutions for all baggage handling applications. The specialist will be presenting them from 10 to 13 October 2023 at inter airport in Munich.

NORD-baggage-transport.jpg: In airport logistics, baggage items often have to be transported over long distances; NORD drive solutions provide high energy efficiency for this. Image: NORD DRIVESYSTEMS

Occasionally, baggage items of varying weights are transported over long distances and at irregular intervals: This is the great challenge for airport baggage handling. Here, NORD DRIVESYSTEMS offers various high-efficiency drive solutions.

Outstanding energy efficiency
NORD’s IE5+ synchronous motor convinces with an energy efficiency of up to 93 percent and thus even surpasses the highest standardized efficiency class IE5. The drive specialist does not only offer it as a stand-alone motor but also in integrated drive systems that reduce the number of interfaces and thus further increase system efficiency. In the patented DuoDrive geared motor, the IE5+ motor is integrated into a helical gear unit and does not only provide outstanding efficiency but also a compact installation space. In contrast, the LogiDrive drive system features a decentralized frequency inverter that efficiently controls the drive and is placed directly on the geared motor, enabling easy installation.

Particularly important for the industry: The IE5+ motor design and the frequency inverter operation allow for the same motor variant to be universally used worldwide – regardless of the local mains voltage or the respective energy efficiency regulations.

NORD-LogiDrive.jpg: An IE5+ synchronous motor, a bevel gear unit and a decentralized frequency inverter are integrated into the LogiDrive drive system. Image: NORD DRIVESYSTEMS

Reducing variants, minimizing costs
NORD drive technology achieves a very high and relatively constant efficiency over a wide speed and torque range, and also provides optimum energy consumption performance in partial load and speed ranges. This allows the use over a wide load range and thus the reduction of the number of drive variants in a complete system. Administrative costs are minimized and production, logistics, storage and service processes are streamlined. This results in a significant reduction of the user’s Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).

An energy-efficient drive is especially important for large conveyor systems with numerous drive units. With the NORD ECO service, NORD supports its customers in finding the most energy-efficient drive solution. NORD specialists measure the system’s load profile and determine whether the drive is optimally designed. Should this not be the case, they recommend a more efficient drive configuration.

NORD DRIVESYSTEMS will be presenting its solutions for the airport industry from 10 to 13 October 2023 at inter airport Europe in Munich, Stand B5-1566.

Smiths Detection Sells its 1000th 3D X-ray Scanner

Smiths Detection, a global leader in threat detection and security screening technologies, today announces that it has achieved the 1,000th sale of its HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX computed tomography (CT) X-ray scanner.

The HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX produces high-resolution volumetric 3D images for quicker and deeper baggage assessment and automatic explosive detection with low false-alarm rates. This provides an advanced security screening experience that allows passengers to leave electronic devices and liquids in their hand luggage, enabling passengers to move through airport security checkpoints faster, without compromising on safety. The state-of-the-art security scanner ultimately leads to greater safety outcomes, more efficient operations and improved passenger satisfaction. 

Already in use in airports around the world, the HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX has been shown to reduce time spent at security by up to 50%, with 90% of passengers at Milan Linate Airport passing through security in fewer than five minutes[1].

Philo Daniel, Global Director Aviation and Urban Security said: “This is a significant achievement for us at Smiths Detection and is reflective of the remarkable system that the team have produced. Not only does the HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX generate the highest quality images, but it also helps make faster decisions and has the quickest belt speed on the market – all of which contributes to getting passengers through security faster, while helping to make the world a safer place.”

In addition, the HI-SCAN 6040 boasts the lowest energy consumption of its type, which not only helps customers achieve their sustainability goals but helps to reduce noise and heat emitting from the system – resulting in a calmer security screening experience and a low cost of ownership.

The system has ECAC EDS CB C3 approval and featured on the Transport Security Administration’s (‘TSA’) CPSS QPL & APL for base, medium and large configuration checkpoint CT checkpoint screening systems. The CTiX scanner is also STAC, ENAC and IPMO approved, and has TSA APSS v6.2 Level 1 certification. 

Earlier this year, Smiths Detection announced the launch of the HI-SCAN 6040 CTiX Model S, which offers the same high-standards with a smaller footprint. This system has already achieved ECAC EDS CB C3 certification in Europe, with further local approvals to follow.

U.S. Asks for Help Finding F-35 Fighter Jet After Pilot Ejects

A stealth fighter jet has gone missing after the pilot ejected during a “mishap”. The authorities have asked the public for help finding the F-35 after the pilot ejected over South Carolina.

Joint Base Charleston located in North Charleston, South Carolina is working with Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort to “locate an F-35 that was involved in a mishap.”

The pilot was able to safely eject from the aircraft, an F-35B Lightning II jet, and was taken to a local medical center in stable condition, according to a post on social media.

The jet belongs to the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing unit’s training squadron. “The search-and-recovery efforts for the aircraft are ongoing, and we are thankful to the agencies assisting in this effort,” Captain Joe Leitner, the spokesperson for the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, said. “The mishap is currently under investigation.”

The jet was left in autopilot mode when the pilot ejected from the aircraft, Jeremy Huggins, a spokesman at Joint Base Charleston, said. Authorities believed there was a possibility that it could have remained airborne for some time, though as of noon Monday they were said it was no longer flying.

Joint Base Charleston said in a statement that it was coordinating with units and leaders in the Marines and Navy, as well as the FAA, Civil Air Patrol and local law enforcement across South Carolina. The base said searchers were using “both ground and air assets” in the effort.

A post on the Joint Base Charleston Facebook page said this:

“Personnel from Joint Base Charleston and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort (MCAS Beaufort SC) are responding to a mishap involving an F-35B Lightning II jet from Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT) 501 with the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing.”Personnel from Joint Base Charleston and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort (MCAS Beaufort SC) are responding to a mishap involving an F-35B Lightning II jet from Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT) 501 with the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing. The pilot ejected safely and was transferred to a local medical center in stable condition. Emergency response teams are still trying to locate the F-35. The public is asked to cooperate with military and civilian authorities as the effort continues. If you have any information that would assist the recovery teams, please call the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing Public Affairs Office at 252-466-3827.

Veridas Voice Biometrics Now Available on Genesys AppFoundry

A Spanish technology company specializing in digital identity and biometrics, announced its Voice Biometrics Solution is now available on the Genesys AppFoundry, a marketplace of solutions offering a curated selection of applications and integrations that elevate customer and employee experiences.

With Veridas Voice Biometrics, Genesys says customers can easily identify their users in as little as three seconds.

As a 100% proprietary solution, Veridas Voice Biometric revolutionizes call center authentication with real-time voice recognition. Swift and secure, and powered by top-class NIST-rated algorithms, Veridas replaces lengthy knowledge-based verification methods with passive identity verification, utilizing a text and language-independent solution that provides a seamless customer experience.

“Veridas brings a paradigm shift to the contact center industry,” says Ignacio del Castillo, head of strategic partnerships, Veridas. “Our clients benefit from reducing Average Handling Time (AHT) by 60-90 seconds while increasing client satisfaction and Net Promoter Score (NPS). In today’s digital landscape, ensuring the security of customer interactions is paramount. From just a simple, 3-second conversation, Veridas can accurately address customers by name, guaranteeing their true identity and mitigating the risk of fraudulent activities. With Veridas’ breakthrough capabilities, businesses can confidently embrace a new era of contact center operations, combining efficiency, customer satisfaction, and enhanced security.”

Veridas developed an integration of its Voice Biometrics solution in Genesys Cloud CX to provide customers with a secure and streamlined authentication experience while reducing fraud and improving operational efficiency in contact centers, both in IVR and live-agent interactions. In 2021, BBVA, a global financial giant, successfully integrated Veridas voice biometrics through Genesys to authenticate customers. According to Miguel Villaumbrales, Head of Digital Identity at BBVA, “People readily embrace biometrics when it addresses their needs – something Veridas’ technology has accomplished.”

Veridas application is now available with Genesys Cloud CX, an all-in-one composable solution that helps organizations offer frictionless and connected customer and employee experiences. As a modern, API-first experience orchestration platform, Genesys Cloud CX enables organizations to coordinate every interaction and touchpoint through a full suite of omnichannel options, built-in employee experience, turnkey AI and end-to-end journey optimization.

Teledyne FLIR Defense Signs $31 Million Contract with Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace for C-UAS Systems for Ukraine

eledyne FLIR Defense has signed a contract with Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, Norway, to provide its Cerberus XL mobile counter-unmanned aerial system (UAS) as part of a total C-UAS solution for Ukraine’s military. Cerberus XL combines an advanced thermal/visual imaging system with highly sensitive radar sensors onto a mobile platform to rapidly locate and track UAS targets. (Photo: Business Wire).

Kongsberg recently signed an agreement with the International Fund for Ukraine (IFU) to deliver counter-drone systems that will be donated to the war-torn nation. The IFU was established by the UK and international partners to identify and procure critical capabilities and deliver them quickly to Ukraine. Norway and the UK are among many nations that have contributed to the fund.

Cerberus XL combines an advanced thermal/visual imaging system with highly sensitive radar sensors onto a mobile platform to rapidly locate and track UAS targets. Kongsberg then feeds information from Cerberus into its remote weapons station to disable and defeat the threat.

“Teledyne FLIR is proud to partner with Kongsberg in delivering our next-generation Cerberus XL as part of a complete and robust system to protect Ukraine’s warfighters,” said Dr. JihFen Lei, executive vice president and general manager of Teledyne FLIR Defense. “We have a long history of providing state-of-the-art imaging solutions to Kongsberg, and this important joint effort only strengthens our relationship.”

In addition to the Cerberus systems, Teledyne FLIR is supporting Ukraine’s defense with other advanced military technology, including its Black Hornet nano-drone. The Black Hornet 3 is currently being used by Ukrainian forces through donations made by the British and Norwegian governments.

UK NATS Shuts Down Due to Technical Problem

The National Air Traffic Service (NATS) of Britain shut down Monday, August 28 due to technical issues. The shutdown caused major problems for travelers on flights. The issue was resolved but the ramifications continued to reverberate throughout the system in Europe impacting travelers trying to return from abroad as well as those departing.

The agency said their automatic flight plans processing system malfunctioned. This required them manually input data and caused numerous delays and cancellations.

A statement made by video said the system was repaired. “It was fixed earlier on this afternoon. However, it will take some time for flights to return to normal, and we will continue to work with the airlines and the airports to recover the situation,” said NATS operations director Juliet Kennedy in a video on its website. “Our absolute priority is safety and we will be investigating very thoroughly what happened today.”

“The flight planning issue affected the system’s ability to automatically process flight plans, meaning that flight plans had to be processed manually which cannot be done at the same volume, hence the requirement for traffic flow restrictions. Our priority is always to ensure that every flight in the UK remains safe and we are sincerely sorry for the disruption this is causing. Please contact your airline for information on how this may affect your flight,” the statement said.

A note on London Heathrow’s site said, “Schedules remain significantly disrupted. We ask passengers to only travel to the airport if their flight is confirmed as still operating. We are working as hard as we can to minimize the knock-on impacts and assist those who have been affected.”

D-Fend Solutions Launches EnforceAir2 Next Generation Counter-UAS with Seamless Operational Flexibility, Higher Performance, and More Power in a Compact Form Factor

D-Fend Solutions, the provider of radio frequency (RF), cyber-based, non-kinetic, non-jamming, counter-drone takeover technology, has announced the launch of its new product, EnforceAir2. The next-generation product features the best offerings of the original award-winning EnforceAir technology with enhanced, expanded, and extended C-UAS capabilities. The system now comes with more power, performance, portability and range, all in a more compact and accessible system, the company says.

High-Performance, Purpose-Built C-UAS Cyber-SDR Hardware with Specially Designed PCBs

  • Longer-Range Detection and Mitigation Coverage ranges
  • Overcomes limitations of traditional commercial off-the-shelf SDR platforms
  • Multiple receivers and transmitters; powerful real-time processing; advanced RF technology; compliance with radio regulations
  • High-Performance MIMO (Multiple Input, Multiple Output) Antennas for improved radiation patterns and compact footprint form-factor implementation suitable for tactical or fixed applications

Man-Portable Backpack Option

The system’s brand-new backpack deployment provides flexible on-the-move full capability protection for tactical and stealth operations in a compact ultra-mobile solution:

  • Covert use case suitability with concealed antennas and a rugged, slim, lightweight design
  • Long-term power from hot-swap batteries providing long-duration, no downtime continuous operations

Seamless Operational Flexibility (SOF)

EnforceAir2’s multi-use deployment kit enables tactical teams to overcome deployment challenges and achieve total operational flexibility. This includes:

  • Quick set-up, locking, and release mechanisms for rapid conversions between deployments
  • Short to medium-term stationary deployment options for tactical teams
  • Tactical, Vehicular, Stationary, and Man-Portable (backpack) deployments
  • Best-in-Class SWaP (Size, Weight, and Power) delivering unprecedented power and portability, in a compact, lightweight small form factor, with easy transport, and simple handling and set-up

“EnforceAir2 reinforces D-Fend’s strategic market position as the pioneer and leader in the groundbreaking technology category of RF-Cyber for counter-drone detection and mitigation, focused on control, safety and continuity,” said Yaniv Benbenisti, president and chief product officer of D-Fend Solutions. “As the threat escalates and proliferates, into more varied environments and scenarios, EnforceAir2 now brings unprecedented power, flexibility, and portability to security officials to confront and overcome the growing risks and challenging dangers.”

Prigozhin Confirmed on Fatal Flight

The death of the Russian mercenary Wagner Group’s leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin, was confirmed after the plane he was flying on fell out of the sky in northern Russia near Kuzhenkino, Russia. The mercenary leader had tried to stage a mutiny against the Ukraine War was in fact on a plane that crashed, killing all on board. The Embraer Legacy was registered to one of Prigozhin’s companies.

Genetic testing was required to confirm that the bodies at the crash site were actually the names on the manifest for the flight, one of whom was Prigozhin. Russia’s civil aviation authority said some of the other passengers were members of his inner circle.

No cause has been given for the crash of the business jet, which is shown in footage obtained by BBC, falling from the sky somewhere between Moscow and St. Petersburg, where Prigozhin is from.

The timing of the crash raised questions of a possible Kremlin-directed hit. Prigozhin’s fate has been speculated over since his mutiny attempt against Russian military leadership earlier this summer. He was said to have been in the process of being exiled to Belarus.

Bruker to Provide 60 Explosives Trace Detectors for Zurich Airport

Flugenhafen Zurich AG in Switzerland has ordered 60 Bruker DE-tector flex explosives and narcotics trace detectors to support their airport security measures. The installations are planned over a 24-month period in 2024 and 2025 to enhance the screening of passengers at Switzerland’s busiest airport. The next-generation, high-performance Bruker DE-tector flex systems are intended to replace earlier explosive trace detectors (ETD) at Zuerich Airport. First-generation Bruker ETD detectors are already deployed at Geneva Airport in Switzerland.

The Bruker DE-tector flex is a next-generation transportable explosives and narcotics trace detector that meets the requirements of two important security applications in airports. By wiping surfaces with multi-use, disposable swabs, and inserting them into the DE-tector flex, traces of two classes of explosive and narcotics substances can be identified automatically within seconds. The new DE-tector flex system is certified by ECAC (European Civil Aviation Conference) and utilizes a non-radioactive ionization source.

“We are very pleased to have been selected for the next-generation security project at Zuerich Airport to provide innovative technologies and solutions that support the safety and security of the public and the aviation industry,” said Dr. Andreas Kamlowski, president of the Bruker Optics Division.