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Fastest airplane boarding system

by Peter O'Shannessy on January 30, 2017 Comments Off on Fastest airplane boarding system

The airplane boarding system was motivated by the slow process of getting onto an aircraft. It certainly provided long-suffering traveller/inventor Rob Wallace with plenty of motivation to think of a better way. Moreover, waiting in airport departure lounges provided the perfect opportunity to think of a better way – the Flying Carpet.

Simple airplane boarding system

It’s a deceptively simple way of getting passengers onto planes quickly. Basically, it is the seating plane of the plane printed at a reduced scale on the floor at the departure gate. This enables passengers to arrange themselves in row order before entering the plane.

Pulkovo Airport, St Petersburg, Russia.

Passengers pause briefly on the Flying Carpet on their way to the plane. Each group of about 15 to 20 passengers took about 45 seconds to form and move on.

With a couple of minor hold-ups it took about 10 minutes for 9 or 10 groups to reach the plan; all 171 passengers were seated 13 minutes after boarding commenced.

Not just a good idea – it definitely works

Theoretical predictions, computer simulations and common sense always indicated that the Flying Carpet system would be the most efficient way to fill a plane, but recent real-world trials during regular flights S7 Airlines in Russia put it beyond any doubt. Out of 62 trials comparing boarding systems the Flying Carpet was fastest by far – in it’s very first trial 171 passengers boarded an Airbus A321 in 13 minutes.  On the third trial the time was down to 10 minutes for 151 passengers. Staff conducting the trials predicted even quicker boarding in future.

These times are about half the usual time, saving about 10 minutes. As well as being much quicker and more pleasant for the passengers, it means large cost savings for an airline. For just one plane, 10 minutes saved for each of 6 flights per day at $40 per minute reduces operating costs by $2400 per day.

Flying Carpet details

2.4m wide x 8m long with 36 rows,  the design used in the trials is adequate for all single aisle aircraft, ie. 80% of all commercial airplanes. It is laid on the floor just beyond the boarding pass checking station. Passengers don’t need to stand exactly on their place – just within the coloured square containing their seat number.

Business Opportunity

Inquiries are welcome, particularly from airlines, airports, and firms providing services to aviation.

The Flying Carpet (US Patent No. 8534216B2) belongs to RoundPeg Innovations Pty Ltd, an Australian company specialising in the research and development of a wide range products and processes.  The company is wholly owned by Rob Wallace, design engineer and inventor of the Flying Carpet.


More information can be seen on:

Edited video of the first trial Video:

Flying Carpet Website:

Flying Carpet Facebook Page:

Flying Carpet YouTube Channel:

RoundPeg Innovations Website:

Peter O'ShannessyFastest airplane boarding system