CDM: The Answer to How Airports Can Make Substantial Efficiency Gains?

By Muhammad Humam
1st December, 2020

CDM systems have proven their usefulness over the course of their usage, increasing efficiency and improving decision making. The result has been the inclusion of CDM platforms in many upcoming aviation goals/standards, including SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research), one of Europe’s most futuristic plans for the improvement of air traffic management, as reported by IATA, EUROCONTROL and ACI Europe. The importance of CDM has also been emphasized in the Flight Efficiency Plan published by IATA, CANSO and EUROCONTROL.

What enables CDM platforms (like EMMA) to improve efficiency?

As reported by IATA, there are four enabling factors which allow CDM platforms to make airport operations more efficient.

  1. Transparency and quick information sharing between relevant stakeholders about target off-block time (TOBT) and the assignment of ownership to stakeholders
  2. The creation of a pre-departure sequence using an algorithm up-to-date with the latest CDM requirements
  3. Taxi times which automatically update based on the situation on the ground
  4. A unified application programming interface (API) for resource allocation optimization

What are the benefits of CDM?

The implementation of CDM has a return on investment of nearly 800% with the cost of implementation being gained back within a couple of years after implementation, based on a report by IATA, EUROCONTROL and ACI Europe. Airports can benefit immensely from the implementation of CDM since this would allow them to allocate their resources in the most efficient manner by ensuring that stakeholders have relevant information at hand at the right time. For instance, using CDM, flight stakeholders can be informed up to 10 minutes earlier about stand allocation, allowing teams on the ground to plan and set up ahead of time, saving material and temporal resources.

IATA, EUROCONTROL and ACI Europe point out that airlines also have much to gain from CDM implementation. Transparent information and timely coordination can reduce the chance of missed connections, reducing the expenses of reimbursement for airlines. Not just that, fuel usage can also be reduced due to a decrease in taxi time and turnaround time at the airport. Through reduced fuel consumption, we can realize environmental benefits through the implementation of CDM too!

Overall, CDM platforms, as per David Phythian of EUROCONTROL, by allowing for efficient information sharing, result in a decrease in the number of unused flight slots, an increase in punctuality, a decrease in congestion, a decrease in expenses for movement on the ground, increased predictability and the enablement of informed planning before flight departure.

EMMA combines these benefits of CDM technology with its artificial intelligence system to provide airports with the added benefit of predictability, helping them save further time and resources. With technological implementation being a major trend in the aviation industry, it is clear that CDM implementation will soon be a key element for the success for airports all around the world.