Insights from Routes World 2023

Routes World 2023, a pivotal event in the aviation industry, recently provided a platform for airlines, airports, and government authorities to convene and discuss the challenges and opportunities that surround air services and global economic growth. As a moderator at this event, I had the honor of guiding a panel discussion, featuring distinguished speakers from various sectors, as we delved into the complexities of managing disruptions and irregular operations in the aviation world.

Our panel of experts included:
•    Mr. Serkan Kılıç Pegasus Airlines, representing the airline sector.
•    Mr. Haydar Yalçın EuroControl, providing insights into air traffic management.
•    Mr. Tonderai Mangombe Airports Company of Zimbabwe, offering the perspective of airport authorities.

I am pleased to assemble all the ideas and thoughts that have emerged from the valuable experiences and observations of my panelists, covering various aspects of aviation. I hope it will be an informative read for you.  

The Importance of Collaboration

The central theme of the discussion revolved around the critical importance of collaboration. Irregular operations are an undeniable source of stress for all aviation stakeholders. To navigate these challenges effectively, the panel emphasized the need for seamless collaboration and cooperation among airlines, airports, and government authorities. Such partnerships are not just desirable; they are an essential ingredient in achieving collective solutions. I would like to open a parenthesis here and take this opportunity to remind you of my previous blog post on Hitit's community governance system, which is based on the spirit of unity and joint action between Hitit and its Partners. 

Learning from the Past: The Icelandic Volcanic Ash Disruption

The panel drew upon the Icelandic volcanic ash disruption in March-June 2010 as a case study, illustrating how unforeseen events can bring air travel to a standstill. The successful management of this crisis relied heavily on collaborative efforts, swift decision-making, and effective communication. These lessons from the past underscored the critical nature of preparedness.

Preparedness Through Crisis Management Plans, Training, and Effective Communication

Emphasizing the significance of having robust crisis management plans and the need for adequate training, the panel stressed the importance of preparedness in addressing irregular operations. It was noted that aviation professionals must be well-equipped to respond effectively during disruptions. Additionally, the discussion highlighted the vital role of effective communication, which is essential in providing passengers with clear and timely information, reducing frustration and uncertainty.

The Role of Technology 

The panel dedicated a significant portion of the discussion to technology, particularly the role of artificial intelligence (AI). It was noted that preemptive measures, facilitated by AI-backed solutions, can help prevent disruptions and streamline operations when they occur. As Hitit, an exemplar in this field, we talked about how AI and optimization technology can enhance the predictability and efficiency of airport operations. 

Innovation for a Resilient Future

In concluding the discussion, it was evident that the aviation industry is on the path toward a more resilient and efficient future. Through collaboration, preparation, effective communication, combining with the power of technology, stakeholders can collectively tackle disruptions and irregular operations more systematically and comprehensively. 

As industry veterans, many of us have relied on optimization techniques to navigate challenges in the past. With the remarkable advancements in AI and the synergistic combination of AI with optimization techniques, we now possess a formidable toolset to address IROPS issues. AI/ML excels at processing vast amounts of data, enabling us to forecast disruptions and take proactive measures, which is the key to achieving success. Hitit's commitment to optimizing processes through artificial intelligence stands as a testament to the industry's dedication to continuous improvement.

As we look ahead to the future, the insights shared during this discussion will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in shaping the global aviation landscape, ultimately benefiting all stakeholders in the industry.