Events 17.05.2019

VivaTech 2019: VINCI Airports is working with start-ups to bolster its environmental leadership

VINCI Airports and VINCI Energies’ challenge at VivaTech 2019 distinguishes automation and visual recognition applied to waste recycling, the aim being to improve waste management at security checkpoints, a mandatory process for passengers before they are able to access boarding. This innovation will make life easier for passengers and is part of VINCI Airports’ environmental policy "AirPact".

As an operator committed to facilitating environmentally friendly and inclusive mobility, VINCI Airports has chosen to explore the theme of environmental performance at VivaTech 2019 in association with VINCI Energies, a subsidiary of the VINCI Group specialised in the digital transformation and the energy transition.

The goal was to improve waste management at security checkpoints. All travellers are required to go through this process before they are able to access boarding. It is a key stage of the passenger journey that aims to ensure personal belongings and hand luggage comply with security requirements. The process has a considerable impact on waste production as international air travel regulations do not allow liquids, aerosols and cosmetics in containers with a capacity greater than 100 ml on board the aircraft.

Among the many start-ups that took up the challenge, VINCI Airports selected Greedy Station, a French company based in the south-eastern department of Isère that specialises in recycling solutions. VINCI Airports and Greedy Station will together develop a smart machine that automatically sorts waste using optical sensors and image recognition technology. It will make life easier for passengers, as they will simply use a single container and it is the machine that will do the sorting.

A pilot project will soon be launched in collaboration with TG concept, a subsidiary of VINCI Energies, at Lisbon airport, which handles nearly 30 million passengers each year. If successful, it will then be extended across the entire VINCI Airports network.

Through the VINCI Airports international network, 42% of passenger waste is already recycled or reused. The idea of involving start-ups in recycling is to make further progress in this area as part of AirPact, VINCI Airports’ wider environmental policy, which takes a pioneering stance and is the first of its kind among airport operators. AirPact requires all 46 airports operated by VINCI Airports to reach and maintain a shared set of standards, which often go over and above the regulations in force in each country in terms of energy, carbon footprint, waste, water, pollution, noise and biodiversity.