South African Airways (SAA) became the first airline globally to install the Satellite Authorisation System (SatAuth). The system, will allow secure credit card transactions anywhere in the skies, while also providing accurate aircraft tracking services for operational purposes.
SAA installed the device, which was 14 years in the making, on one of its Airbus A340-300 aircraft (Registration: ZS-SXE) at the SAAT maintenance facility in Kempton Park, Johannesburg earlier this week.
The system allows card details to be identified in real time and immediately sent to the bank when purchasing items on-board. Additionally, there are no limitations to card purchases.
It also allows for real-time positioning of any flight, anywhere, impacting fuel saving interventions in-flight as well as providing full visibility of actual flight paths versus planned routing at any time.
Further tests will be run in due course, in relation to the particular functionality the airlines would want out of the system, md of SatAuth Paul Roux told eTNW’s sister publication Travel Buyer.
SatAuth is the first product of its kind, and was developed in South Africa.
SAA plans to install SatAuth across its entire long-haul fleet over time. “Probably soon after primary tests are completed,” Roux said.
Five other major airlines have enquired about the installation of the system, according to Roux.