EasyJet uses AI to better manage flights from new control centre


EasyJet Plc passenger aircraft on the tarmac at London Southend Airport in Southend-on-Sea, UK. Personnel based at the integrated control centre near Luton Airport, Bedfordshire, have access to Jetstream, a generative AI tool that helps them solve issues for pilots and crews on the ground more quickly, easyJet said. — Bloomberg

LONDON: EasyJet’s new control centre is enabling its operations teams to better manage flights using artificial intelligence (AI), the airline said.

Personnel based at the integrated control centre near Luton Airport, Bedfordshire, have access to Jetstream, a generative AI tool.

This helps them solve issues for pilots and crews on the ground more quickly, easyJet said.

Among the benefits of AI are predicting standby crew requirements and recommending the best crew options for each operation, according to the airline.

More than 250 staff work in the control centre, managing easyJet’s daily programme of around 2,000 flights.

Their responsibilities include planning routes, allocating pilots and cabin crew, arranging aircraft maintenance and passenger communications.

The facility is designed to provide a calm environment for workers, with natural daylight and limited noise.

EasyJet chief executive Johan Lundgren said: "We are really pleased to have our new operations control centre up and running in time for the summer season ramp up, providing our operational team with a modern and bespoke facility from which to manage up to 13,000 flights a week.

"At easyJet, we saw the potential early on for data to improve customer experience and operational efficiency which could help us provide a better flying experience for our customers, crew and pilots.

"And while you can’t always see it, the technology is already hard at work in the air and on the ground helping us predict exactly what food and drink we need for certain routes while minimising food waste, aiding predictive maintenance decisions and helping us to ensure we have the right aircraft on the right routes to best match demand.

"We continue to invest in and deepen our knowledge and use of AI, with a rapid deployment team working on 250 live use cases across our operations and scheduling, customer service, the booking experience and easyJet holidays.”

Gill Baudot, director of network control for easyJet, said: "Each and every day my whole team are responsible for, and entirely focused on, safely getting more than a quarter of a million passengers to their destinations, navigating the many and varied challenges that Europe’s busy and complex airspace can bring.

"Providing our people with generative AI solutions at their fingertips helps to speed up decision-making to solve operational issues as they occur and we can see many ways to further build on the progress we have already made and enhance this in the near future.” – dpa

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