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The Airport

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The Airport

  • Near field communication (NFC)
  • Conformable lighting designs
  • Solar power
  • Radio frequency identification (RFID)
  • Flexible display screens

Near Field Communication (NFC)

The latest developments in printable electronic technology enable sensors to be printed onto a range of substrates, such as plastic, paper, glass and metal. The ability to develop flexible form factors compliments conventional electronics technology and increases designers’ freedom to embed NFC scanning technology into a range of objects within an airport environment, facilitating flexible security scanning.

Looking into the future, we see the emergence of ‘virtual shopping walls’, where shoppers can scan printed posters and other promotional materials with their smartphones to purchase duty free items or to receive promotional offers. Printed electronics provide the opportunity for NFC sensors to be mass produced, and will facilitate their incorporation into an increasing number of applications such as passport check-ins, payments at duty-free shops, booking travel services and purchasing tickets for onward transport at the airport.

CPI can partner with organisations operating in the aviation sector to take these products from concept to commercialisation.

Commercialisation: 0-5 Years

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)

Printable electronic technology enables RFID tags of bespoke designs to be manufactured at scale in a cost effective manner. Example applications in the airport are wide ranging, for instance, this technology could be utilised in baggage control, where a printed RFID tag sends a signal from a bag to passengers’ mobile phones, allowing them to identify the exact whereabouts of their luggage from their smart phones and saving them time at the collection carousel.

Commercialisation: 0-5 Years

Flexible Lighting and Display Screens

Now almost any surface has the potential to illuminate, whether it is the floor, walls, ceiling or furniture, thanks to printable electronic technology. This technology will revolutionise the lighting and displays sector, driving the commercialisation of novel products which can be semi-transparent and flexible, and are suitable to cover large surface areas.

Thin OLED displays are already being used in many mobile devices, TVs and monitors. The next generation of these panels will be flexible, empowering manufacturers to produce OLEDs using roll-to-roll processes, and opening up a host of opportunities for novel architectural lighting and information displays in the airport.

Commercialisation: 0-5 Years

Printed Solar Technology

Innovations in solar technologies are facilitating new designs for solar panels with thin, lightweight, encapsulating envelopes and flexible form factors. This makes solar panels suitable and desirable for applications where flexibility, product shape and aesthetic value are important. Flexible photovoltaic technology will allow architects and product designers to integrate photovoltaic devices into a wide range of surfaces within the airport, such as roofs, walls, windows, lightings and fabric applications.

CPI is working closely with organisations and academia in the field of solar technology, and can advise companies in the aerospace sector on adopting this technology for use within their own products.

Commercialisation: 5-10 Years