The Concept

The Aerochk concept offers a new way to check in, pass security, and proceed through immigration in airports and other travel hubs. These three steps could be completed in less than a minute as passengers travel along the Aerochk escalator toward the departure gates.

The Context

Long delays at airport security and check in have resulted in missed flights for millions of passengers worldwide. Passengers who travel regularly spend many hours trying to get through these manual checkpoints which can lead to frustration. We believe that it is possible to improve the screening process at these transport hubs using existing technologies and infrastructures.

How It Works

When travelers arrive at the airport, rather than waiting in a separate security line, they would just walk towards the nearest Aerochk on their way to their boarding gate. Passengers would place their passport on the left side of the machine and their luggage on the right. Allowing passport , the traveller and his luggage to be checked simultaneously.

The linear robotic passport conveyor would then check if the passport is valid and if the person is registered for an upcoming flight. It would then register them for their flight and perform all other necessary background checks. Facial recognition would confirm the passport photo with the individual on the Aerochk and specialized devices would confirm that the passport in question has not be tampered with or is fraudulent. In the event of a person’s denial to travel, i.e. invalid documents, failed background check, the Aerochk would set in motion a process to alert the relevant authorities.

Each traveler embarking on The Aerochk would pass through a portal where they would be identified by cameras and other sensors. Their height and weight would be recorded to optimize the ‘weight & balance’ of the aircraft and other equipment would be used to identify passengers and determine if they pose a threat to the flight or a country. The Aerochk could even ask questions to each traveler and record their vocal answers.

The luggage conveyor would check if bags contains dangerous or prohibited items using multiple types of scanners including electronic noses like the Cumulus sensor. Each suitcase would be photographed, weighed, and associated with its owner automatically.

Larger bags would be diverted into the cargohold while hand baggage would be picked up by passengers upon exiting the Aerochk. If a problem was detected on a suitcase or if more information is required, then it would be routed to a different exit and inspected by an airport agent.

Technologies already exist to accomplish this type of fast and efficient check-in. Other versions of the Aerochk system could even be designed and adpated for children, disabled people, pregnant women, etc. (Example it could take the shape of an elevator). The optimal way to organise this new process is open for debate, but it is clear that we could all benefit from a faster and easier boarding process.

The Aerochk also reduces the likelihood of human error which is prevalent in areas where large volumes of people are passing though. It is very easy for workers in airport security to miss contraband in luggage simply due to the excessive volumes that they have to process every hour.

Potential Markets

The Aerochk could be sold and installed in all airports, ports, and bus and rail stations in the world. It could be offered in various versions according to the check-in, security, and immigration rules in each country. Airport employees would still work around the Aerochks; they would just use them as a new tool. Scaled down versions could be sold to large shopping centers, sport complexes, or theaters and integrated into elevators and moving walkways.

The Designer

This concept was first created in March 2016 by Charles Bombardier under the name ‘Escatek’ it was revisited and updated this year. Both concepts were designed by Ashish Thulkar, an Industrial Designer from Bengaluru, India. Ashish graduated with a master’s degree in design from the Indian Institute of Science in 2014. Ashish currently works as a freelance vehicle designer. He also created the Whisper surveillance drone and the Hawker VR flight controller.