Airport Equipment Exhibition.
On the apron of Aerodrom Ljubljana d.d. on Thursday, 21 September, 2000 an exhibition was mounted featuring airport vehicles, devices and equipment used for groundhandling, maintenance of manoeuvring and landing areas, fire-fighting and rescuing in the event of aircraft or other accidents.
More than 100 vehicles, machines and devices were exhibited, most of them expensive pieces of equipment designed especially for airport use in the total value of several hundred millions of Slovene tolars.
The largest and most expensive exhibits were:
- heavy fire-fighting vehicle Rosenbauer PANTHER, with the capacity to carry 13,500 litres of water, 1,500 litres of foam and 500 kg of powdered extinguishing agent. It is driven by a 735 KW (1000 hp) engine and costs more than SIT 150 million.
- ice-thawing vehicle TB-8000 enables safe takeoffs of aircraft also during winter. It is used to remove snow and ice from aircraft surface and additionally protect the aircraft immediately before taking-off with a special anti-freezing liquid. The price is SIT 75 million.
- three special apron buses COBUS, SIT 45 million each. The floors of the busses are lowered in order to facilitate the passengers entering and exiting. Each can carry up to 120 people.
- three lift platforms used for loading cargo onto aircraft. The largest is capable of lifting more than 18 tonnes of cargo to the height of 5.5 metres.
- tow tractor SCHOPF. An almost 50-tonne vehicle used to tow aircraft on the apron. Using different drawbars this tractor can tow aircraft of different sizes from small ones to Boeings-747.
- engine starter GARRETT. For starting aircraft engines by compressed air.
- catering vehicle for transportation of meals from the catering unit to the aircraft.
- winter maintenance vehicles. Snow-ploughs and powerful trucks with ploughs are used for removing snow from the runway and other manoeuvring areas. Special brushes, powered by an approximately 340 hp engine, sweep the snow left by the ploughs while the remaining snow is removed by a strong blower.
Besides the described equipment there were also electrical power units which supply electricity to aircraft, potable water tankers, toilet cleaning vehicles, conveyor belts for loading baggage, mobile passenger stairs, aircraft cabin cleaning equipment, cargo and baggage trailers, other small fire-fighting and rescue vehicles, utility vehicles and, last but not least, the follow-me vehicles used for guiding and parking aircraft on the apron.
Complex equipment and devices must be handled in an adequate and professional manner. Therefore, Aerodrom Ljubljana d.d. regularly organises advanced in-service training for its employees handling this equipment. Appropriate handling means not only providing quality services but also ensuring safety and accuracy in air traffic.