British Airways pushes planes with remote-controlled vehicles
09.25.17 Rob LeFebvre
British Airways e-tug
They're electric, too.
From renewable fuels to eco-friendly airplane tugs -- British Airways is
interested in decreasing its ecological footprint. The airline has just
announced the roll out of five new Molotok remote-controlled electric
vehicles that can push back aircraft from the gate. These eco-friendly
vehicles replace the standard diesel tugs that you typically see at airports
so that a single ramp agent can push an aircraft out with a little control
device worn on their belt. British Airways claims that it is the "first
airline worldwide" to implement these tugs.
The five new electric airplane tugs are in operation at 25 gates at Terminal
5 in Heathrow Airport. The Molotoks are able to move planes with more
precision than traditional driven vehicles. The Mototok website claims that
the electric vehicles can park up to 40 percent more airlines in the same
amount of parking space. They hold their charge for up to three days and
will be charged at stations at each of the 25 gates at Heathrow.
"British Airways is the most punctual, major short-haul airline in London,"
said British Airway's COO Klaus Goersch in a statement. "The introduction of
the Mototok will help us to stay at the top of the league and keep our
flights departing on time. This major step to modernize our operation is a
first in the airline industry, and part of wider investment in new
technology that will enhance the experience our customers have."
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