Business Irish

Wednesday 18 September 2019

Dublin Airport unveils plans for security upgrade

Dublin Airport is one of Europe’s busiest, and handled 31.5m passengers last year
Dublin Airport is one of Europe’s busiest, and handled 31.5m passengers last year
John Mulligan

John Mulligan

Dublin Airport is embarking on its multimillion-euro project to upgrade a security-screening system for passenger baggage at Terminal 1.

DAA is kickstarting a massive overhaul of its baggage-handling systems to comply with new explosive detection requirements under EU rules.

DAA has previously indicated that the work on the baggage security system at Terminal 1 would begin this year. It's not due to be finished until 2023.

The airport operator has already said that the project at Terminal 1 will be challenging due to spatial and structural constraints.

DAA intends to demolish a baggage-handling building between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2, and replace it with a five-storey extension. It will include an extended baggage hall with new equipment, a control room, offices and other facilities. There will also be a baggage conveyor link to the Terminal 2 baggage hall.

The DAA indicated in 2017 that the planned overhaul of baggage security systems at Dublin and Cork airports would cost in the region of €13m.

It has just applied for planning permission for the development at Terminal 1.

The EU introduced its new explosive device screening regulation in 2011, mandating the dates by which existing systems must be retired and new ones installed to meet the new standards.

The current system in many airports in Europe typically relies on X-ray machines to detect possible explosive devices in baggage that's destined for an aircraft hold.

The new explosive detection standard - Standard 3 - means that airports have to install more sophisticated technology that can perform computer axial tomography (CAT) analysis of baggage.

Dublin Airport handled 31.5m passengers in 2018, and will top that figure this year. It has benefited from a number of new routes, including destinations in Asia and North America.

The DAA is investing heavily in additional infrastructure designed to help Dublin Airport cope with the increased traffic.

Capacity projects amounting to about €1bn are planned, while an additional €320m is being spent on the construction of a new runway and associated infrastructure.

The upgrade of the baggage systems is considered a core project at Dublin Airport. Other such initiatives include extensions to multi-storey car parks.

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