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Interactive Session: Technology: Can Airlines Solve Their Baggage Handling?Case Study Questions 1.What types of transactions are handled by baggage handling systems? The primary types of transactions handled by baggage handling systems are moving bags from check-in areas to departure gates, moving them from gate to gate and then finally, moving them from arrival gates to baggage claim areas. That's a lot of input data, processing, and output data. When computers scan the bar code on a piece of baggage, the data is processed quickly. The output determines where and when to send the bags. After being scanned once, the system always knows where the bags are at any point in the system. 2.What are the people, organization, and technology components of baggage handling systems? People:Those who tag luggage at check-in counters must enter the data correctly. The tags contain flight information and a bar code that all of the computers in the system can read. Once bags reach the gate, they enter a sorting station where airline employees use computer terminals to send bags to the correct plane. Delta Airlines recently added a service that allows passengers to track their checked bags from scanning at check-in, to the flight they’re loaded on, and then arrival at baggage claim. Organization:Paying for often spotty and unreliable baggage handling service was one of the biggest sources of customer dissatisfaction throughout the industry. Baggage handling systems can be extremely expensive, but if implemented successfully, pay for themselves. Lost and mishandled baggage is a major expense for airlines, and reducing the incidence of lost and mishandled baggage creates significant yearly savings. Technology:Baggage handling systems are among the most complex systems because they involve a wide variety of sensors, actuators, mechanical devices, and computers. The systems use over 3 million lines of software program code. Advanced technology used in these systems include destination-coded vehicles (DCV), automatic bar code scanners, use of radio frequency identification (RFID) tags, and high-tech conveyors equipped with sorting machines. Because DCVs move at high speed and do not come to a full stop to receive baggage, the conveyors must be extremely precise, depositing bags where they are needed at just the right time for maximum efficiency.
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bar code, Avianca, Delta Airlines, baggage handling systems