Airport operators rely on ground support equipment to meet the operational requirements demand of aircraft and passengers on the ground. To meet the growing passenger traffic, aircraft movements, and air cargo volumes, the best-in-class ground support equipment are essential. The ground support equipment is required for airports, ground handlers, fixed-base operators, airlines, and air cargo transport providers. The need for the best ground support equipment is increased due to the development of aviation infrastructure, construction of new airports, and expansion of existing airports. GSE (Ground Support Equipment) is designed to help the operations of an aircraft while it is at the airport. Ground Support Equipment comprises airplane forklifts and lifts, air-conditioning tugs, light-duty trucks, push-back and hook-up, vehicles, belt & container loaders, and other equipment that serve the purpose of towing, servicing, and powering. Ground support equipment will also enable baggage handling, repair, maintenance function, passenger handling, aircraft mobility, and service. Most airline companies either own or maintain GSE or adopt full leasing of services from equipment management companies.
The major factors driving the growth of the Airport ground Equipment market
There is a boost in this market due to the growth of air traffic and Cargo. Moreover, GSE propels all over the world due to the adoption of next-generation GSE by airports. According to IATA (International Air Transport Association), the global airfreights markets showed the demand for air cargo, which is increased by 18.7% in 2021. In addition, the IATA’s air passenger forecast of 20-year showed that the number of air travellers can double to 8.2 billion by the year 2037. Thus, the demand for air travel is expected to drive the market growth. Airports are improving to decrease their turnaround time and increase their operational efficiency. The development of Airport ground equipment has supported to reduce of equipment congestion and operational time in airports. For example, a collaborative decision-making tool is adopted in the airports of Latin America and the Caribbean to improve operational efficiency. The CDM tool works on a real-time exchange of information that enhances the predictability of operations by enhancing planning quality and increasing situational awareness. The market growth is driven by the adoption of advanced GSE.
Trends influencing the growth of the market
The aviation sector is focused on adopting greener products. Authorities in regulatory are working on implementing guidelines for eco-friendly technologies and processes. There is a huge demand for eco-friendly and greener aircraft GSE in the aviation industry due to an increase in awareness of environmental concerns. Initiatives taken by the key players backed by strong emission control regulations will enhance the growth of the aircraft ground equipment market. The market growth is accelerated by the increase in the growth of the used and refurbished products. Most airline focuses on the upgradation and modernization of ground support equipment. To save costs Airport ground equipment market businesses is paying more attention to refurbishing old equipment that will increase the life span and add upgrades. For example, the London Luton uses revolutionary systems such as belt loaders, aircraft stairs, and others. This reduces the congestion, improves aircraft turnaround and overall delays, and reduces congestion.
The main key driver for the growth of this market is the development and expansion of airport infrastructure. One of the main restraints of this market is the high acquisition cost of electric ground equipment. The cost of electric ground equipment is 50% more than the cost of conventional ground support equipment. There is a decline in the cost of electric ground equipment over the years, but still higher than the cost of diesel variants. Thus, small and medium-sized airports find it hard to deploy electric ground equipment. The manufacturing volume is low in electric ground equipment as the initial cost is very high. The batteries used are also high in cost and they have to replace every 5-8 years. These factors restrain the growth of the electric ground support equipment market. Innovation in technologies used in ground support equipment finds its opportunities in the market. One of the main challenges faced by the market is the overloading of electric grids. Regular charging is required for electric ground support equipment, and the grids supplying power to the airports, do not have the ability to charge all the electrical equipment on the ground as it leads to overloading of the grid.
Menzies Aviation awarded a contract to Rushlift GSE, UK of a six-year agreement to supply GSE equipment. Based on the agreement, the company leased 650 brand-new vehicles to Menzies aviation at Heathrow and Gatwick airports. With a weight of around 100,000 pounds, The first commercial airplane tug was unveiled by BestTugs. The company builds the tug for around six years with up to 24,000 pounds in the pull style, remote control, and loader.