February 1st to 5th, 2021 – Online Event

The 2021 TBS Hackathon was all about airport safety and efficiency! From February 1st to 5th, 2021, 89 TBS students from 18 different nationalities competed to create 3 applications from scratch in order to help increase airport safety and efficiency for vehicles, staff, luggage and aircraft.

Hackathon Vignettes Web 854x480 1

Increase airport safety and efficiency

Here at TBS, we believe that the combination of technology, intelligence and efficiency can help us create a better future for all. Last year, TBS organized the Amazonian Forest Hackathon, where students had to find sustainable solutions to limit deforestation.

This year, 89 TBS students from our Master of Science programs in Marketing, Management & Communication and Big Data, Marketing and Management participated in the Smart Tracker Hackathon to increase the safety and efficiency of airport vehicles, employees, customer luggage and aircraft.

Mirroring the international environment at TBS – and potentially their future working environment – students worked in multicultural teams from a wide range of countries (France, China, Mexico, Ivory Coast, India, Vietnam, Brazil, Turkey, Morocco, Guatemala, Lebanon, Taiwan, Russia, Italia, Spain, USA, Finland and Colombia). The teams competed against each other to design dedicated applications for the airports of Toulouse, Paris Charles de Gaulle and Bordeaux, which could subsequently be deployed in airports across the world.

Bandeau Aeroports

Expertise from international key players in the aviation industry

To make sure students stayed on the right track during the Hackathon, they were coached and briefed by Jean-Clément MASSE, Project Manager with Air France, by Marc POLLINA, CEO of M3 Systems France, Olivier DESENFANS, Managing Director of M3 Systems Belgium as well as by Julius AKINYEMI, organizer of the Hackathon, former executive in the aerospace industry, and current Coordinator of TBS’s MS in Management Innovation Technology. Air France guided the students on airport functioning and luggage logistics, while M3Systems shared their expertise in geolocalisation and geotagging for airports.

During the Hackathon, students also had access to the software and development platform from software giant SAP and received a crash course in design thinking from d.school Paris.

Partenaires Hackathon

The Smart Tracker Challenge

Mission: design geotracking and surveillance applications to increase airport safety and efficiency

Safety is a key issue for airports, as minor incidents on the ground and flaws on the runway can compromise the safety of both staff and passengers, which is something that became painfully clear during the Concorde incident. Efficiency is also crucial: we’re all familiar with luggage that arrives late or gets lost, and when fuel and meal vehicles arrive late, both passengers and staff experience delays, which causes customer distress and adds extra costs for airline companies.

Hackathon Vignettes Web 854x4802 1

As all these actions are currently done manually and leave room for error, the Smart Tracker Hackathon challenged students to come up with 3 innovative applications to improve:

  • Efficiency & safety of luggage delivery: track luggage vehicles (Dollies) to make sure they’re all in the appropriate location for loading and unloading in order to save time and costs
  • Efficiency & safety on the apron: track movements in the apron (the area around the aircraft) to make sure food and fuel supply vehicles as well as maintenance and cleaning are accounted for to increase safety and efficiency
  • Efficiency and safety on the runway: track movements in the runway to make sure the area is safe and there’s no risk during take-off and landing

The solutions were evaluated based on 6 factors as designed by Julius Akinyemi and evaluated by 7 jurors of the companies involved in the project:

  1. Students’ understanding of the challenge for the business
  2. Alignment of the Business Challenge
  3. Innovative Approach of the Solutions
  4. Creativeness of the Solution “Wow” factor
  5. The Business Value Proposition of the Solution
  6. Feasibility/Scalability of the Solutions

And the winners are….

Luggage Efficiency Winners Hackathon

For Luggage Delivery: Air France Group

Students: Kalairani VIGNESH, Emilien CHOLET, Manon COTE, Nicolas DANG & Mario DEL BUSTO

The Air France group created a mobile application demo that can be advanced to an operational level, while ensuring transparency to all users. They were credited for the extensive built-in functions with regard to the various tasks of employees working in luggage operations. They also integrated efficiency functions to better use the baggage dollies, with expected cost savings.

Apron Efficiency Winners Hackathon

For Efficiency & Safety on the Apron: the ApronGO group

Students: Anusha PAI, Alizée HAUD, Polina HAAN-SHABAROVA, Danielle IMPARA, Jinghand JI

This group created a mobile application demo that can be advanced to an operational level. They were credited for innovative ideas in mitigating the risk of accidents/collision around the aircraft while promoting efficiency of functions, even integrating a panic button to alert potential stakeholders. They are also credited for their in-depth research and knowledge of the operations given the short period of time.

Hackathon 2021 Runway Efficiency Winners

For Efficiency & Safety on the Runway : the eTrackAir group


The eTrackAir group created a mobile application prototype that can be advanced to an operational level. They were credited for the good design of the mobile app and its ease of navigation. The application provides transparency to cross-functions within the operational functions to geotag events, report and alert emergencies when needed and coordinate responses.

Julius Akinyemi600x400

It was a pleasant surprise to see the students leverage their collective intelligence, diversity of knowledge, discipline and their creativity to design innovative solutions to meet the challenges. Discussions with the businesses indicate that some of the solutions, even the ones that are not the finalists can be rebundled for more robust business solutions at the airports. I’m very proud of ALL the students for their efforts and creativity.

Julius AKINYEMI – Organizer of the Hackathon & Coordinator of the MS in Management Innovation Technology

Many thanks to our partners!

The TBS teams would like to express their gratitude to our partners who made this hackathon possible:

Air France

A global aviation giant with a strong European base, the Air France-KLM Group mainly focuses on passenger transport, cargo transport and aeronautical maintenance. Air France-KLM is the leading Group in terms of international traffic on departure from Europe. It covers 250 destinations thanks to the combined fleets of Air France, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Transavia. With a fleet of 554 aircraft and 104 million passengers carried in 2019, Air France-KLM operates up to 2,300 daily flights, mainly from its hubs at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol.

M3 Systems

M3 Systems is an SME specialized in reliable and precise geolocation. Since 1999, the company focuses on Space / Defense and land transport fields (Automotive, Rail). Located in Toulouse, the company is also present in Brussels with M3 Systems Belgium. M3 Systems offers GNSS expertise, Test & Measurement software for innovative applications such as connected and / or autonomous systems. M3 Systems has contributed to the definition of concepts and innovative solutions supporting the R&D activities of space agencies (ESA, CNES) and of the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (EUROCONTROL).

Hackathon Vignettes Web 854x480 1

‹ Previous news Next news ›