Blockchain for Safe and Sound Air Travel
In this article, I am going to discuss the usage of blockchain technology for safe and sound travel. This article focuses on passenger health safety and aircraft safety score sharing with travelers in a transparent way.
Digital Identity And E-Health Passport.
After spending months in lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, countries across the world have begun lifting the ban on international flight transportation, and many airlines slowly started operations in full swing. The primary focus now for all airlines is to ensure a safe and sound journey for all of its passengers. In an attempt to ease the health and corona infection concerns, a number of blockchain companies are developing blockchain-based digital identity solutions with AI-powered identity verification technology to securely onboard travelers. Passengers mobile app with a digital health passport as proof-of-health that keeps track of each patient’s medical data and can be shared as needed. Moreover, once a vaccine is developed, the airline will be able to determine passengers who received the vaccination. The signup to the app will be limited with face identification or any passport with passenger face image and the same will be used when issuing the health passport. The hash, or footprint, of the health test results, along with the hash of the digital identity at the time of issuing the card and the track of the verification will be stored in the blockchain.
The health passport will be encrypted as a non-fungible card that can use to identify themselves automatically. The passenger can give self authenticated access to this health passport at check-in time or while walking through the airport entry gate with a validity checking scanner and then a QR code boarding pass will be issued to the traveler in the airline or any common travel app which they can show during there entire journey. The same health passport concept can be incorporated with IATA’s One-ID concept. The airline can also request access to the health passport at the time of booking before issuing a ticket.
Airline Safty And MRO
Would you like to travel in a plane which is not safe? Who wishes to book a ticket on the airplane that has maintenance issues? It would be great for the passengers if they get a score about the maintenance details of the flight they are booking. A color-coded display about the maintenance score will be displayed by the OTA ‘s or Airline booking web portal or passengers can also verify it on a public blockchain using Dapp. It sounds strange, but it could become possible with the help of Blockchain. With the increased number of aircraft, the maintenance process also becomes complicated. Still, many details about aircraft maintenance paper-based. Even for those who digitalized the process, electronic- records are stored in multiple databases causing inefficiencies, time-consuming retrieval processes, and lack of transparency. Also, data in centralized databases which could be easily manipulated or compromised. Also, data maintained separately by different stakeholders of aircraft maintenance cause time consumed extraction of information which causes a delay in the investigation in case of accident or audit. The blockchain could be a possible solution to store aircraft maintenance records securely to bring trust and transparency in exchanging the information. Maintenance logs, manufacturing details, component details, and other sensitive information of the aircraft can be stored on the private or public blockchain. Using smart contracts, all stakeholders can seamlessly access the aircraft maintenance records. Therefore, implementing a decentralized approach to maintain record could be the right solution to bring efficiency and trust in the system.
The different stakeholders such as Manufacturers, MRO Service Providers, Airline companies, Flight Auditor, and Customer can form a network which feeds data into the blockchain. The kind data feeding by each user depends on the role assigned to the stakeholders in the network. The role will be embedded with there certificate. The other users can only view the data. Typically, information such as the last repair details, components that had malfunctioned, when would the next repair service be done, the longevity of the aircraft, electrical wiring and components, hydraulic and air conditioning components, cabin inspection details, procurement data, flight logs, sheet metal fabrication, tube bending, other mechanical data with respective manufacturing and expiry date, will be feed by manufacturers, MRO service providers, and airline. The Flight Auditor, customer, and buyers can consume this information. The Auditor can use this to quickly find out where the problem would have occurred and why it happened if any component gets damaged. Once the status is determined, it is updated on the blockchain.
Smart contracts use information stored by auditors and airline companies to display the aircraft’s health score. So, customers could check the score while booking a flight ticket. This can be built as a combination of private and public blockchain with private blockchain can store the Manufacturers, Service providers, Airline and Auditor data feed, and use Etherum public blockchain smart contract rule to find and store score against each airline ‘s flight.
Building a blockchain solution for aerospace that has the power to deliver the solutions outlined above is no small task. Many companies already come up with solutions or proof of concepts in a similar line outlined above. Although blockchain is a global technology, any solution will have to meet specific jurisdiction requirements. For example, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires that personally identifiable data be erasable. The regulation is regional, but a global blockchain design has to account for it in workforce-related use cases. So, I expect similar regulations to influence the design and execution of the digital identity-based health passport outlined above.