Technological development and innovation

Application of the latest technologies throughout all levels of Aeroflot’s operations and management is of strategic importance for the Company. Aeroflot works with leading global developers of IT and technology solutions as well as encouraging in-house R&D work and proprietary technologies.

The airline uses several dozen IT services that are available around the clock to support its operations, ensure flight safety and to achieve the objectives of key business units. These services include reservation and ticket sales systems, flight planning, and specialised avionics systems.

Single payment solution

The number of tickets purchased via the Aeroflot website and payment agents using Aeroflot’s unified payment system continued to grow in 2013. The value of ticket purchases through the system exceeded RUB 44.2 billion during the year.

A gateway for online and mobile ticket payments has been added to the unified payment system. This gateway also enables users to purchase insurance, and members of the Aeroflot Bonus frequent flyer programme can use their bonus miles online or via mobile as well.

Sirax revenue accounting system

In early 2013 Aeroflot began commercial operation of the Sirax revenue accounting system, which has been acknowledged as one of the best solutions in its class. In addition to installing the new IT solution, Aeroflot has adopted best international practices in revenue accounting.

Use of the system has substantially improved the quality and speed of sales accounting processes, as well as automating responses to errors made by agents and increasing the transparency of revenue accounting.

In-flight Internet

Aeroflot was the first Russian airline to enable use of mobile phones and the Internet during flights. In 2013, the Company further developed its in-flight Internet service: the necessary equipment for Internet access had been installed on 15 Airbus A330 aircraft and four Boeing 777s by the end of 2013.

Data processing centre

Aeroflot created a back-up data processing centre in 2013 in collaboration with HP and Technoserve. The modular centre will provide reliable back-ups for all of Aeroflot’s information services, taking account of increasing volumes of air transport and the deployment by the Company of new, highly critical IT services.

Aeroflot InfoCentre

The Company designed and set up the Aeroflot InfoCentre, a software and hardware complex for the automated telephone notification of passengers. The system makes it possible to inform passengers quickly in case of flight alterations: it automatically contacts passengers by phone, making up to six attempts to reach them. Customers can thus be efficiently informed of flight delays (even delays as short as one hour). Such precision in the notification of passengers is unique in the airline industry. The project was declared the winner of the 5th national contest Top-10 IT Projects in the Public Sector in the category Most Effective Contact Centre Solution.

Flight simulators

Aeroflot uses modern flight simulators for pilot training. Flight simulators currently in use by Aeroflot are as follows: FFS A320 Series 5000, FFS A320 Series 7000, FFS IL 96-300 (full-flight simulators); FNPT DA-42, MFTD A320, SNT IL 96-300 (procedural simulators); emergency and rescue simulators for A319/320/321, A330, B767, SSJ-100 and Il-96-300 aircraft; as well as a fire drill trainer and specialised pool for emergency water rescue training.

In 2013, the Company commissioned Russia’s first full-flight simulator for the A330 aircraft, manufactured by the Canadian company CAE Inc. The FFS A330 simulator has the most up-to-date six-level electrical movement system available and a highly realistic imaging system that meets all international requirements, including the requirements of EASA’s Level-D JAR FSTD A.

The Company took delivery of a full flight simulator for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft in 2014. Installation of the simulator at the Company’s Air Crew Training Centre enhances pilot skills and ensuring that they are familiar with all flight regimes for the new aircraft.

Acquisition of more FFS MC-21, FFS A350 and FFS B787 simulators is planned in the future.

Process optimisation

The introduction of a unified automated system for airworthiness and the management of maintenance and repair functions is expected to optimise the process of spare part orders at all airlines in the Aeroflot Group.

The Company has also developed a concept for the introduction of an automated information and analysis system for aviation security management. The system will be implemented throughout Aeroflot Group in the future.

Innovative development

Aeroflot depends on innovative development for successful implementation of its growth strategy on the highly competitive global passenger carrying market. The development and implementation of innovative solutions help to build shareholder value. Aeroflot’s innovative development programme is designed to improve key indicators related to safety, punctuality and quality of passenger service, and to increase synergies between existing business processes.

In 2013, Aeroflot’s innovative development programme was updated to include all of the Group’s aviation assets. The programme now includes all the main projects and activities that are being carried out by JSC Aeroflot and its subsidiaries Donavia, Rossiya Airline, Aurora and Orenair. The programme sets key performance indicators for innovative activity in the medium and long term for the period 2011-2020.

As part of its innovation activity the Company carries out its own R&D work in association with Russian universities and scientific organisations, in accordance with the Russian government’s requirement that state-owned companies create demand for products of the Russian knowledge sector.

In 2013 Aeroflot was the only airline to be included among the Top 50 most innovative companies in Russia. Aeroflot ranked higher than many major Russian industrial companies, taking 15th place.

Research & development

Some of the areas where Aeroflot is actively involved in R&D work include:

  • Study of applications for combined reality technology in the training and testing of air traffic controllers (take-off, flight and landing). The results of the study will be used in the training of air traffic controllers.
  • Study of applications for combined reality technology in the training and testing of special vehicle operators at airports. The results of the study will be used in the training of special vehicle operators.
  • Study of applications for combined reality technology in an online directory with three-dimensional models of aircraft assemblies. Results of the study will enable the use of distance learning for students at engineering universities in preparation for employment at Aeroflot, as well as distance learning for retraining of engineers and technicians now working at the Company, and also as an online tool to assist maintenance and repair work.
  • Development of prototype software and an information centre for the situational modelling of airline operations, with integration of existing software. The project is being implemented in association with the Central Aero-Hydrodynamic Institute and the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, and seeks to optimise operating processes at the Company, increase productivity, and ensure optimal use of the fleet and of human resources.

Technology support for Aeroflot’s sniffer dog service

Aeroflot’s sniffer dog service is researching technology applications to support the use of sniffer dogs for detecting and identifying trace amounts of target substances. The company is working on a method for determining the accuracy of searches for explosives and other dangerous substances using sniffer dogs by means of a digital system that records and analyses the physiological parameters of each dog.

Aeroflot is collating the outcomes of this research to prepare a concept for the use of sniffer dogs in the Russian Federation up to 2020. This initiative has been approved by the Russian government.

Aeroflot presented innovative techniques for the use of sniffer dogs in non-intrusive inspection of vehicles and cargo at the World Cynological Forum in 2013.