Dublin airport docking system


An electronic display above aircraft parking stands, AVDGS provides real-time information to those controlling the plane as they park the aircraft upon arrival to an airport, or as they push back for departure. This immensely useful component for passenger safety is being installed by Dublin Airport on all aircraft contact parking stands. 

Dublin Airport is already having its busiest ever summer and is currently welcoming an average 100,000 passengers and 750 arriving and departing aircraft per day during peak season. More than 15.5 million passengers travelled through Dublin Airport in the first six months of the year, representing a 6% increase on the same period last year and Dublin Airport has welcomed almost 875,000 additional passengers in the first six months of the year. The 11th busiest airport in the EU, Dublin Airport has flights to almost 200 destinations in 43 countries, operated by 53 airlines.


The new system is equipped with the added safety feature of an infrared high-definition camera that scans the aircraft parking area for any possible objects that could affect the safety of the arriving or departing aircraft.  This camera detects large objects on the ground like equipment or baggage, which may block the stand and cause knock-on delays.

This information, delivered immediately to the pilots, means that airline baggage and ground handlers can get to the aircraft quicker to ensure faster aircraft turn-around thereby helping to reduce potential delays for the airline and its passengers. It also ensures that the aircraft and its support vehicles are not running engines unnecessarily, in turn reducing carbon emissions from the airfield, something which many major airports are taking very seriously. 


AVDGS also enhances the role of airline marshals who guide aircraft onto and off the parking stand. The marshal inputs key information such as the aircraft type and other flight data into the AVDGS, which automatically gauges aircraft clearances, stopping distances, and records the exact on and off stand times.

Then, the recorded times feed directly in to the Airport’s Collaborative Decision Making (A-CDM) system. A-CDM focuses on aircraft turnaround times and pre-departure sequencing processes to boost air traffic flow and operational efficiency of all airport operators by reducing delays and increasing the predictability of events.

It is a Europe-wide initiative under the guidance of Eurocontrol, which is the European organisation for the safety of air navigation.

“AVDGS is another example of technology enhancing airport processes that deliver huge benefits for the airport, its airline customers and passengers,” according to Dublin Airport Managing Director Vincent Harrison. “It is a tried and trusted system of improving airport safety and efficiencies and supports Dublin Airport’s continuing drive for sustainability,” he added.

The smart AVDGS system is also equipped with a low visibility function allowing aircraft to park in extremely poor visibility conditions, such as mist and dense fog, thereby reducing the risk of delays in inclement weather conditions.

Image from left to right : Mark O’Connor, Project Manager, Asset Management and Development Dublin Airport; Conor Carroll, Client Project Owner, Asset Care, Dublin Airport and Dan Davis, Senior Project Manager IT, Dublin Airport pictured with the new Automatic Docking Guidance System at the South Gates in Dublin Airport.