SATAVIA DECISIONX: Air Bridge
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SATAVIA DECISIONX: Air Bridge

SATAVIA provides live and forecast COVID-19 risk along an air passenger journey and integrates by API into an existing airline webpage interface or mobile application.

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SATAVIA provides decision intelligence and actionable insight to make aviation smarter, cheaper and greener. SATAVIA’s exceptional team combines talent in artificial intelligence, data science, data and software engineering, and atmosphere and climate science.

SATAVIA is supported by Microsoft in the UK through its involvement in the AI Factory – part of Microsoft for Startups. SATAVIA has been recognised in the top 50 companies in the 2020 European Startup Prize for Mobility list.

 

Challenge

Global air travel likely contributed significantly to the early transmission of the COVID-19 pandemic. With many countries now beginning to lift restrictions designed to limit the spread of the virus and air travel picking up, there is again an increased risk of international transmission caused by air travel. Many countries have proposed opening air bridges (also called travel corridors) allowing unrestricted travel between designated countries without requiring a period of quarantine on arrival.

As air bridges start to open, it is crucial that risk assessments are made, and that ongoing live monitoring of their safety is carried out. This will allow policy makers to make informed decisions about which bridges to open, and also to keep this advice updated throughout a highly dynamic situation. It will enable airports and airlines to ensure that protective measures put in place are appropriate to manage risk to travellers, staff and the wider public.

 

“SATAVIA uses aircraft tracking data from Spire Aviation to enable live and historical analysis of aircraft movements.”

Dr. Adam Durant, CEO, SATAVIA

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Solution

SATAVIA developed a model for forecasting transmission risk along an air bridge. Publicly reported case numbers are corrected, accounting for under-reporting and delays. The model is used to forecast the number of infected passengers flying on the air route using estimated passenger numbers, and the resulting impact on the destination country. The model can be used to compare air bridge destination countries to assess relative risk levels through a dashboard interface.

SATAVIA uses aircraft tracking data from Spire Aviation to enable live monitoring of route usage, and thus live updates of virus importation risks. Historical analysis of route usage by aircraft type allow forecasts of route-risk broken down by airline and airport.

Impact of potential air bridges from England

England has recently allowed unrestricted travel from a list of 75 countries and territories.

Using the air bridge forecast model, the risk associated with these destinations were analysed (as of early July 2020), along with other routes popular in 2019.

Figure 1: Dashboard interface for comparing the impact of potential air bridges between UK and Belgium. Charts show the expected number of passengers and the projected daily infectious imports over the next 2 weeks.

Projected daily infectious imports

Spain, Italy and France are the highest risk routes because of higher passenger numbers.

Other routes are of lower risk, but some countries are currently showing potential increase in prevalence. These destinations must be monitored carefully as air bridges are opened, to ensure that transmission risk remains low. Portugal, a notable exception from the quarantine exemption list, has been increasing in risk over recent weeks.

Figure 2: Projected daily infectious imports for key destinations with quarantine exemptions in England. The orange error bars show the projected change in daily imports over the next 7 days.

UK Imports by Airport

Recent tracking of flights powered by Spire data has shown a significant increase in British Airways flights from Heathrow, since the start of July. The largest increases have been in domestic flights as well as flights to key tourist destinations including Spain, Italy, Germany, France and Portugal. With higher passenger numbers anticipated as international travel resumes, the risk of disease transmission across these routes must be monitored and managed.

Figure 3: Import risks broken down by airport. The highest risk UK airport is Heathrow.

Ultimately, this modelling framework allows forecasting of infected passenger movements, transmission whilst travelling, and the impact on the destination country of opening and maintaining air bridges.

 
Download the case study

SATAVIA DECISIONX: Air Bridge

SATAVIA provides live and forecast COVID-19 risk along an air passenger journey and integrates by API into an existing airline webpage interface or mobile application.

Get the case study

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