London-based UK tech start-up UtterBerry has developed technology with backing from the Department for Transport and the Home Office to revolutionize airport experience by creating smart security trays.
UtterBerry are in advanced talks with major UK airports to roll out the technology from next year, following interest from Northern European and Far Eastern countries for the smart trays.
UtterBerry began developing the technology in July 2020 as part of Future Aviation Security Solutions (FASS) program, joint initiative between the Department for Transport (DfT) and the Home Office. The FASS program has £25.5 million in funding to invest over five years to provide new aviation security solutions.
The company hopes the technology will enable airports around the UK to become world-leaders in smart travel and offer greater security and peace of mind for passengers. Improved technology has already led to a 47% fall in airline baggage losses over the past decade to 24.8m. This development will lower that number even further by providing a link between passenger, tray and baggage during the security part of the experience.
UtterBerry’s development uses blockchain technology, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and miniaturizing hardware for the trays, and can provide a real-time interface to show an overview of the trays in use at a security channel, and basic information on passengers that are being checked.
The interface also provides analysis of passenger throughput and contributing factors to delays, such as time of year, weather and flight times. With the integration of the X-ray operatives interface, passenger information can also be displayed on the baggage inspection monitors. The data collected from the smart tray system can also predict people numbers, meaning staffing levels can be managed more easily.
It works by issuing a passenger with a smart card, which stores their basic details and flight information, or alternatively, a mobile app can be used. A smart card reader on the tray then allows the passenger to link their belongings to the UtterBerry smart tray. When a passenger interacts with the device, an LED will indicate the state of the tray via red, blue and green signals.
Security staff won’t have to worry about short battery life, the company says. Power is transferred to the tray via wireless charging when stacked in a tray return system (TRS), enabling the trays to run for long durations without maintenance or downtime.
“UtterBerry’s work to enhance security trays, will not only increase security at the border but make airport checks quicker and easier for passengers,” Robert Courts MP, Aviation Minister, said.
Heba Bevan, founder and CEO of UtterBerry adds, “We have been thrilled to work on this innovative project, providing a revolutionary security enhancement solution within airports without hindering passenger experiences…Working with HM Government has ensured we have remained within the necessary guidelines to offer the safest, most streamlined solution.”