Just-in-time fuelling on international airports

M2M solution for AFS Airfield Fuelling Vehicle via UMTS

Die AFS Aviation Fuel Services GmbH, Hamburg, assumes every step in the fuelling process for international airports. By using cellular routers by INSYS icom in their airfield fuelling vehicles short ground times are consequently ensured.

Added value for Aviation Fuel Services GmbH

  • Redundancy due to 2 SIM cards

  • Robust cellular routers for permanent use in vehicles

  • Easy configuration via web interface

  • Can be integrated in VPN services of the providers

Initial situation

AFS Aviation Fuel Services GmbH, Hamburg, assumes every step in the fuelling process for their customers and ensures short ground time consequently. Founded in 1986 as associated company by Lufthansa and BP, AFS is the leading service provider in Germany on the field of aircraft fuelling, fuel depot management and operational management today.

Fuelling aircraft on international airports is a logistical tour de force from the refinery to the aircraft. Moreover, it must be fuelled safely around the clock.

The ultramodern vehicle fleet that has been designed by AFS itself comprises 165 vehicles for kerosene and aviation fuel; more than half a million aircraft fillings with 6.14 million cubic metres have been performed only for kerosene in 2011. All vehicles are equipped with on-board computer, touch screen, printer, PLC and measuring system.

The fuel handling system (FHS) of the AFS associated company GlobeFuel models all processes from the refinery up to fuelling at more than 150 airports world-wide. Error-prone processes, like ‘completing fuel receipts’, are excluded with this.

FHS is connected with the ERP systems of the airlines and oil companies as well as the flight information display systems (FIDS) of the airports. This allows the AFS scheduler to ensure a fuelling to the minute also for delayed aircraft.

Objective

Objective is the smooth transmission of order data; these are the basis for the control of the just-in-time fuelling.

Solution

AFS equips its airfield fuelling vehicles with cellular routers from INSYS icom.

Order data get to the airfield fuelling vehicles via UMTS

The AFS Mobile Communication System (AMCS) developed by AFS transmits order data, like aircraft ID and position, fuel type and volume, oil company and fuelling time to the airfield fuelling vehicle.

Aircraft captains of some airlines can even order directly from the cockpit and get their receipt transmitted electronically.

AFS uses the UMTS networks and VPN services of Telekom and Vodafone for data communication between FHS and the car PC systems. The programmable cellular routers MoRoS HSPA are used as UMTS gateway in the vehicles.

These routers with integrated 4+1 port switch have two SIM card slots and are equipped with one Telekom and one Vodafone SIM card. This makes data communication redundant and allows to use the included data volumes of the SIM card well-balanced. If no HSPA/UMTS network is available, the connection falls back to GPRS or EDGE automatically.

Summary

Reliability during continuous operation and investment protection

AFS Aviation Fuel Services ha has selected the cellular routers MoRoS HSPA from INSYS icom, “because the devices meet our high reliability requirements during continuous operation in airfield fuelling vehicles” says Jan Drömer, Information Systems Manager of AFS, and points out that “the devices can be configured very easily and quickly via a web interface despite their functionality”.

Additional benefit due to extension options

Further decisive factors were the competent support of INSYS as well as the future extension options via the serial interface of the cellular routers and the integrated INSYS sandbox, “since running own scripts in the cellular router is the icing on the cake of innovation possibilities!”

Jan Drömer
Manager Information Systems at AFS

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