Koniku and Airbus Expand Partnership to Re-imagine Aviation Security

Koniku and Airbus Americas have announced the expansion and deepening of their collaboration, which began in 2017, to advance aviation safety and security from curbside to gate for billions of travelers globally.

Koniku has created “smell cyborgs” that detect a range of compounds in the air in real-time, empowering Airbus to design a touchless and seamless traveler experience. The 24-month collaboration marks a pivotal milestone in the companies’ joint go-to-market strategy. The Konikore by Airbus solution will enable a seamless travel experience from curbside to gate while expanding safety beyond traditional areas and enhancing existing security measures.

Airbus joins the Koniku Technology Integrator Ecosystem (KTIE) to build on Koniku’s proprietary wetware technology stack. The Konikore smell cyborg weighs less than 600 grams and embeds engineered living biological neurons capable of reading the air and detecting volatile organic compounds—replicating the function of a dog’s nose. The technology is IoT enabled, streams data to the cloud, and provides numerous functionalities, including reporting, a machine learning backend, and more.

Beyond security, Konikore™ is applicable in the areas of health, diagnostics, manufacturing, food safety, industrial and other verticals. Notably and beyond explosives, the Konikore™ can detect drugs like amphetamines, fentanyl, and hundreds of other compounds. Over time, the smell cyborg will be adjusted to detect contrabands, viruses and pathogens. When a respective molecular compound comes in contact with the Konikore™ an alarm is triggered. So through the rapid development of a Minimum Viable Product, Airbus Americas will provide a real-time explosive detection solution that uses Konikore™.

“We’re delighted to expand our partnership with a ‘best in class’ market leader like Airbus. The Airbus leadership team, including Airbus Corporate Security, has repeatedly reinforced to Koniku the paramount importance of passenger security, safety, and positive experience on the ground and at 30,000 feet,” said Osh. Agabi, Koniku Inc.’s CEO. “We feel excited about bringing such revolutionary technology into the real world.”

“This collaboration will allow Airbus to explore the development of advanced biotechnology solutions capable of revolutionizing aviation and airport security, for the benefit of both passengers and aviation transportation security officials,” said Jeff Knittel, Airbus Americas chairman, and CEO.

This collaboration will leverage Airbus’ engineering capabilities across the U.S. In particular, MTM Robotics, a fully-owned Airbus subsidiary, will develop and prototype software-hardware integration solutions at their headquarters in Mukilteo, Washington.

This partnership is the latest phase in an ongoing cooperation agreement between Koniku and Airbus, which began in 2017. Koniku and Airbus have performed multiple successful tests and performance validations in partnership with local and federal law enforcement agencies and airport security operations. This collaboration marks a pivotal milestone in the companies’ joint go-to-market strategy.

Koniku opens partnership applications for additional partners into the company’s technology integrator ecosystem next month. Koniku is recently coming off a funding round with Presight Capital, SoftBank, IDO Investments, Platform Capital, Andon Okapi Holdings (Oman), and Flying Doctors Healthcare Investment Company. They join existing investors, including IndieBio SOSV, IT Farm, and Airbus Ventures.