In July, Cologne, Germany-based GSE supplier HISER delivered a state-of-the-art training device to Berlin Brandenburg Airport. The Smart Trainer is modelled on an aircraft body and is now in use in Germany for the first time. Ramp operators, fire brigade and maintenance engineers can use this simulator to train their staff in a realistic environment. Managing director Roland Ückert tells Airside more
Can you tell us a little bit about the training device?
The Smart Trainer is the first of its kind. It is owned by HiSERV and the new Berlin Brandenburg Airport BER is the first customer to rent this modern device to train its employees [Berlin Brandenburg is due to open on 31 October, while Berlin Tegel will shut soon after and Schoenefeld will become BER’s Terminal 5].
The HiSERV Smart Trainer is used for training and improvement of procedures that will take place at the airport.
With the HiSERV Smart Trainer, workers on the apron can practice without risk how to approach an aircraft with all their equipment, service the airplane and then move away. This increases both their own safety in the course of their work and reduces the risk of damage to the aircraft.
What smart technology does the Smart Trainer incorporate that makes it such a capable training tool?
The HiSERV Smart Trainer has almost every access point, connector and door available on the most widely used aircraft worldwide. Therefore, our customers can train with equipment as varied as ground power units (GPUs), de-icing or toilet servicing vehicles without risking damage to a real aircraft.
Which other companies and agencies has HiSERV partnered with on this project?
HiSERV developed the Smart Trainer together with [manufacturer] Schrader and DEKRA [the German Motor Vehicle Surveillance Association, an expert in transport-related safety] to reach a new level in training equipment.
The trainer was built by the Schrader company and tested and approved by DEKRA.
BER is now the first airport to rent the trainer for training in preparation for its opening later this year. The Smart Trainer is already located airside at BER.
Do you hope to sell more Smart Trainers to other customers in Germany and abroad in the future?
The feedback after the first tests was so positive that we can very well imagine building another Smart Trainer in the future.
Have you managed to keep business going through the pandemic?
The Covid-19 pandemic has severely affected the entire aviation industry. With our innovative and flexible solutions we support our customers in adapting to this challenge in the best possible way.
We are doing this, for example, by helping them to convert fixed costs into variable costs, by using low-maintenance and therefore very cost-efficient electrical GSE and by optimising the use of their ground service units.
HiSERV has been offering GSE since 2017. It manages a young and modern fleet of more than 4,000 units, the equipment complemented by short-term rental, pay-per-use and real-time tracking options. It also supplies a portfolio of additional services related to GSE rental, such as consulting, maintenance, fleet management and training.