Leo the robot to help Royal Air Maroc

Leo is one of many robots on trial at airports

Leo, the baggage robot developed by SITA, is in Marrakech for the COP22 climate talks.

Leo will be on display in the COP22 convention centre 16 November before moving to Marrakech Manara Airport and Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport where the robot will assist delegates flying Royal Air Maroc to check-in their bags.

The robot will remain in Morocco until November 27 where Royal Air Maroc will conduct numerous airport trials using Leo.

Leo claims to be a fully autonomous, self-propelling baggage robot that has the capacity to check in, print bag tags and transport up to two suitcases with a maximum weight of 32kg.

It also has an obstacle avoidance capability and can navigate in a high-traffic environment such as an airport.

How it works

  • passengers touch the bag drop interface to open the baggage compartment doors
  • they place their bags inside
  • passengers scan their boarding passes
  • tags are printed
  • the passengers attach the tags to the bags
  • with the bags loaded and tagged, the compartment door closes
  • Leo displays the boarding gate and departure time

Leo then takes the bags directly to the baggage handling area where they are sorted and connected to the correct flight. The doors of the robot can only be reopened by the operator unloading the baggage in the airport.

Leo is essentially SITA’s self bag drop on a smart mobile cart. The smart bit is how Leo gets the bag to where it needs to be.

Sita doesn’t say how multiple/hundreds of Leos running around thousands of passengers in an airport terminal will work.

Quite a few robots have been trialled at airports (and ports) for a number of functions, including:

Our favourites are AnBot at Shenzhen Airport with the cattle prod and the Sheldon Cooper lookalike at Indianapolis.

The ugliest has to be Leo. Let’s hope SITA are working on function before form.

N.B. Image credit: SITA

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