news

CVG to utilise AI to predict passenger airport crowding

The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport and the University of Cincinnati have teamed up to predict airport crowding and enhance the passenger experience.

CVG to utilise AI to predict passenger airport crowding

The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) is teaming up with the University of Cincinnati (UC) to predict crowding and enhance the passenger experience throughout the airport.

CVG engaged UC College of Engineering and Applied Science aerospace engineering doctoral student Javier Viaña to utilise airport data to create a software programme to help the airport predict when passengers arrive at the airport, broken down into 15-minute increments. By leveraging data collected by another program previously developed by CVG, Viaña has been able to specifically model queue lines at the security checkpoint.

“The main objective of this work is to improve the passenger experience and inform operational decision-making at the airport,” commented Candace McGraw, CVG CEO. “The modelling done by Viaña provides the airport and our business partners reliable data to prepare our operations based on passenger arrival predictions, potentially reducing crowding and wait times along the travel journey from parking and check-in to security screening and concessions.”

“What makes this model unique is how UC is using artificial intelligence (AI) based on fuzzy logic, a type of computer decision making that allows us to provide a human-like explanation for its predictions,” said Viaña. “We refer to this type of algorithms as explainable and transparent.”

UC’s work is funded in part through a grant from the Airport Cooperative Research Programme (ACRP), an industry-driven network that develops near-term practical solutions to airport challenges. This programme is supported by the Federal Aviation Administration, the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and The National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

“Receiving an ACRP grant award is no easy feat, so it says something about the ever-growing importance of data modelling and the rising applications that utilise AI and fuzzy logic over traditional programming methods,” added Viaña. “It’s an honour to have been selected to further this research along with UC and CVG.”

This collaboration is a direct result of a multi-year memorandum of understanding (MOU) between UC and CVG. The MOU provides the University’s research talent and emergent technologies a living-laboratory environment (the airport) that is a mutually beneficial relationship.