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Thailand’s Suvarnabhumi Airport launches SAT-1 terminal to increase capacity to 60mn passengers

Suvarnabhumi Airport scheduled a soft launch for the first Midfield Satellite Building, known as SAT-1, bringing its passenger handling capacity to 60 million per year from 45 million currently.

The SAT-1 terminal constitutes a key part of the Suvarnabhumi Airport’s phase-two development, which consists of several sub-projects to strengthen the Airport’s capability to accommodate growing passengers to Thailand and air traffic.

Kittipong Kittikachorn, General Manager, Suvarnabhumi Airport commented on the operation readiness of the new terminal, “The SAT-1 terminal has successfully undergone the full-scale trial operations in collaboration with the airlines, ground service providers, and related agencies.” he shared.

Covering a total indoor usable area of 251,400 square metres and an apron area of more than 260,000 square metres, the SAT-1 terminal is a four-storey building with two basements.

The B2 level is home to the APM Station and the B1 level is for the systems control room while the G level houses the Baggage Handling System (BHS) and offices.

Level 2 is dedicated to arrival passengers and those on flight connections while Level 3 is the departure area with a waiting area for boarding passengers in an open gate-style layout and shops lining the hallway. Level 4 is set aside for passenger lounges, airlines’ lounges, and other facilities.

The building is connected to the main terminal by an underground tunnel with a length of about one kilometre. Operating inside the tunnel are the APM system, the BHS, and two airside service roads. Travelling from the current terminal to the SAT-1 terminal is by means of the APM, an unmanned electric vehicle with rubber wheels used solely to transport passengers.

Passengers travelling on international flights departing and arriving from the SAT-1 can take the APM. The journey time, including waiting time at the station for passengers, is about three minutes, and the APM can accommodate up to 210 passengers per train per way.

The new terminal comes with 28 contact gate aircraft parking stands capable of accommodating 8 Code F Aircraft, such as A380 and B747-8, and 20 Code E Aircraft like B747 and A340. There are 64 passenger loading bridges, 24 of them are under Code F and 40 under Code E.

In the initial period, Thai AirAsia X and Thai Vietjet will be operating flights through SAT-1. Thai AirAsia X will operate 14 flights per day, while Thai Vietjet will have four flights a day operating through the SAT-1 terminal. Duty-free delivery counter services, duty-free shops, restaurants, and special passenger lounges will be partially open for operation.

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