Quick Response for Special Needs. Task 41. Toward a Touchless Airport Journey

As technology continues to evolve, airports are seeking opportunities to create a touchless experience along the passenger journey. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the need to eliminate the many common touchpoints, which are now seen as potential points of disease transmission. Further research is needed to examine the airport processes and functions that could potentially benefit from being replaced with touchless technologies. The objectives of this research are to: (1) Develop a quick-reference guide, applicable to all types and sizes of airports, to help airports and their customers, including third-party service vendors, to identify: Readily available touchless technology features with near-term solutions and best practices to allow a safe and efficient journey; Technology gaps and the need for medium and long-term solutions with further development opportunities that could minimize touchpoints. (e.g., at TSA checkpoints, passenger check-in, and other passenger conveyances); and Suggested mitigation strategies and solutions for processes that cannot be touchless (e.g., wheelchair service providers, baggage tags). (2) Compile additional problem statements and input them into ACRP Ideahub https://ideahub.trb.org/ for future consideration of follow-on research to this project. The research should include, at a minimum, these considerations: (1) Current best practices of airports, airlines, service providers, concessionaires, parking and ground transportation providers, etc.; (2) Cost-effective solutions, to include non-aeronautical revenue opportunities; (3) Passenger-centric smart phone and sensor technologies and applications and associated barriers to adoption; (4) Signage and wayfinding opportunities to facilitate the touchless experience; (5) Use of technology to reduce dwell times through shorter queue lines, (e.g., virtual queuing); (6) The customer experience and the different forms of communication; (7) Accommodation of passengers with disabilities and those of special needs (i.e., nursing rooms, pet relief areas, etc.); (8) Techniques for continuous disinfectant processes, (e.g., automated technologies, UV (ultraviolet), and air purifier technology); and (9) Global practices and innovations within and outside of the aviation sector that have been effective in making processes more efficient and touchless.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $100000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 11-02, Task 41

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Airport Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20591
  • Project Managers:

    Schatz, Theresia

  • Performing Organizations:

    Barich, Incorporated

    Chandler, AZ  United States 
  • Principal Investigators:

    Barich, Frank

  • Start Date: 20210305
  • Expected Completion Date: 20220104
  • Actual Completion Date: 20220104

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01748081
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 11-02, Task 41
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Aug 18 2020 11:38AM