Why Airports Need Automated Airfields: A Technological Perspective from Logan Fahey, CEO, Graze Robotics

September 08, 2023


Airports are increasingly becoming complex ecosystems that demand advanced technological solutions for efficient and safe operations. This article discusses why modern airfields are leaning heavily into automation, incorporating technologies ranging from robotic lawnmowers to automated paint stripers, cleaning robots, baggage/cargo management systems, and more.

The Imperative of Efficient Airfield Management

Efficiency and safety are paramount in airfield management. With rising passenger numbers and evolving security needs, airports are turning to automation to meet these challenges head-on.

Robotic Lawn Mowers. Why They Matter

Maintaining the large expanses of grassland on airfields is not just an aesthetic need; it is a safety requirement. Properly maintained fields minimize wildlife hazards and provide better visual landing aids.

Automated Paint Stripers

Runway and taxiway markings are essential for safe aircraft operations. Automated paint stripers can apply these markings with extreme precision, significantly reducing human error.

Cleaning Robots

Automated cleaning robots ensure that both terminal areas and airfields meet high cleanliness standards. They can operate around the clock, minimizing disruptions and reducing manpower costs.

Automated Baggage and Cargo Robots

Robots equipped with AI and machine learning capabilities can sort, load, and unload baggage and cargo, reducing labor costs and errors while improving speed and traceability.

Airfield Lighting Systems

Modern airfields are deploying automated LED lighting systems that can adjust their brightness based on real-time conditions. This technology not only reduces energy consumption but also aids in pilot navigation.

Perimeter Security Systems

Automated perimeter security systems using drones and sensor technology can monitor the airfield's external boundaries for intrusions, providing real-time alerts and reducing the need for constant manual surveillance.

Wildlife Management Systems

Automated systems are also capable of detecting and managing wildlife on airfields. These technologies use advanced sensors to identify wildlife and deploy non-harmful deterrents, enhancing both safety and efficiency.

Environmental Impact

Graze’s electric autonomous lawnmowers are part of a larger trend toward sustainability. Automated technologies are generally more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly, a vital consideration as airports look to reduce their carbon footprints.

Future Outlook

Automation is expected to extend into other areas, including drone-assisted inspections and AI-based predictive maintenance. These technologies will further refine the efficiencies and safety measures currently in place.


Automation is not a luxury; it is a necessity for modern airfields. As we look forward to a more interconnected and automated world, it is clear that technology will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of airfield management.

For expert advice and solutions tailored to your airfield’s unique needs, reach out to Graze today. As a leader in technological innovation for large-scale ground maintenance, Graze is committed to elevating the standards of efficiency, safety, and sustainability in airfield management. In this rapidly evolving landscape, staying ahead means adopting the best practices and technologies available. Through collaborative partnerships and a commitment to innovation, we can collectively usher in a new era of airfield excellence that benefits not just the aviation industry, but society at large.