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Brand new airline operations control centre will manage around half a million flights annually

easyJet has opened a brand new operations Integrated Control Centre (ICC) in Luton to manage its daily flight programme of around 2000 flights. The new centre has embedded AI into its day to day practices to aid faster and better decision making to help improve the customer experience. For example, tools to help predict standby crew requirements and a crew planning tool which helps to recommend and select the best crew options for the needs of the operation.

More than 250 specialists work in the 24/7 control centre managing more than 340 easyJet aircraft flying up to 300,000 customers to 35 countries on more than 1000 routes to 155 airports every day. The new state-of-the-art facility houses experts working across the operation to get flights off the ground and to their destination, safely and on time. Roles in the centre range from route planners,  crewing teams to ensure pilots and crew are correctly allocated to flights, teams dealing with aircraft allocation and aircraft maintenance as well as live customer communications.

The new ICC facility has been thoughtfully designed to ensure the team have a calm environment where noise is limited, the team have natural daylight with dark desks and individual desk lighting so they can create the best working environment for them and a brand new rest room with reclining chairs and dark green walls and ceilings which is proven to engender a relaxing environment.

easyJet has provided teams with a new generative AI tool called Jetstream, which gives them instant access to policies, procedures and information which will enable them to solve operational issues as they occur. And in the coming months, the airline plan for AI-led technology will be placed in the hands of the crew as well. This bespoke tool contains the information from eight operational manuals to aid ICC with a wealth of information making around 3000 pages of manuals available at their fingertips like never before.

AI is also transforming the customers’ ability to fly where they want, when they want. Its predictive qualities are already being used to free up over a million additional seats a year. Every month, thousands of planes are swapped, making sure larger capacity aircraft with up to around 50 more seats on each plane are deployed where AI predicts there is additional demand for seats on the most popular routes. And this benefits the passengers’ wallets as, with more seats available where there is demand, they can get seats at lower prices and easyJet also ensure the planes fly fuller.

They have been using predictive maintenance for many years now to indicate when parts need to be replaced thereby avoiding technical delays and AI is also helping to predict where the airline need standby crew in advance, minimising delays and disruption costs.

The aircraft are also being fitted with new software that helps them interact in real time with air traffic control across Europe. AI is helping  pinpoint precise aircraft locations with much more accuracy helping speed journeys and reduce emissions.

May 29, 2024

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