Brock Solutions’ 2018 Airport Automation Summit

With over 240 airport and airline industry executives in attendance, from North America, Central America, the UK, Europe and Australia, this was our largest Summit yet! We hope that you found the event informative and worthwhile, and we look forward to seeing you again in two years.


Wednesday October 10, 2018 – Brock Headquarters

4:30PM – 8:00PM

Open House and Reception
Thursday October 11, 2018 – Crowne Plaza Kitchener-Waterloo

8:00AM – 8:30AM

Continental Breakfast

8:30AM – 8:45AM

Welcome and Introduction Mark Stokes, Business Unit Manager at Brock Solutions

8:45AM – 10:00AM

Session 1: Cybersecurity in the Operations Technology Space

10:00AM – 10:30AM


10:30AM – 11:45AM

Session 2A: Realizing Value from Resolution 753 and the IATA Baggage RoadmapSession 2B: New Ways of Visualizing and Monitoring BHSs

11:45AM – 1:00PM


1:00PM – 2:15PM

Session 3A: Using Data to Drive and Enhance Business PerformanceSession 3B: Trends in BHS Innovation

2:15PM – 2:45PM


2:45PM – 3:00PM

Afternoon Address and Welcome from Vivienne Ojala Vivienne Ojala, President and CEO at Brock Solutions

3:00PM – 4:15PM

Session 4: The Future of AI, Machine Learning and IoT for Airports and Airlines

4:15PM – 4:30PM

Closing Remarks Mark Stokes, Transportation and Logistics Business Unit Manager at Brock Solutions

5:00PM – 12:00AM



Join us at our Airport Automation Summit to hear presentations on the following thought-provoking topics:

Cybersecurity in the Operations Technology Space
Cybersecurity is an enterprise issue, increasingly on the agenda of the CEO and Board of Directors of many organizations. The Information Technology organization is responsible for taking the lead when it comes to protecting their organization from cyber threats. But what about the technologies that run the real-time operations of industrial organizations (Operations Technology). The threat with these systems are equally real as there are many examples of cyber attacks that were initiated on the plant floor. The United States Department of Homeland Security lists Industrial Control Systems (ICS) as one of the top targets of international hackers. However in many organizations the scope of IT responsibility does not include OT.  Which raises the issue that many organizations are talking about and grappling with today – IT/OT convergence. Does the fact that cybersecurity is an enterprise issue represent an opportunity for organizations to productively move forward with addressing the ever blurring lines between IT and OT?


Keith Vermeer, Brock Solutions will provide a glimpse of how we tackled Cybersecurity, to protect both Brock and our customers’ data while also enhancing the security built into our solutions and services our customers depend on, setting the stage for this eye opening business problem. Flavio Gomes will share how LogiSense has handled Cyberecurity as the Internet of Things (IoT) industry continues its rapid growth.  With the level of connectivity reaching new heights, the inherent complexity of IoT, and desire for their customers to track real-time billing usage, staying ahead of the cyber threat is a critical ingredient to their success. Mille Gandelsman, with Indegy, a leading expert in OT Cybersecurity, will discuss areas that organizations should focus on when it comes to OT Cybersecurity as well as recent innovations in this space. Dan Vandevenne, Brock Solutions, will share his perspectives on how airports and airlines can address security threats in their real time operations.

Realizing Value from Resolution 753 and the IATA Baggage Roadmap
As baggage fees become more commonplace and create more revenue for airlines, passengers demand more: more care, more knowledge of where bags are, and more bags arriving on the right plane. The IATA Baggage Roadmap is creating standards to help airlines and airports deliver better service to their passengers, from this year’s implementation of Resolution 753, to RFID, to Baggage XML. But standards don’t become institutionalized unless they deliver real value.


We believe the early evidence from Resolution 753 is encouraging. Randy Medina, Manager – Airport Operations Planning, from Hawaiian Airlines will share how they have changed years of manual processes to comply with Resolution 753, and the immediate benefits they have seen. We are also pleased to welcome Melanie Jordan, Manager Worldwide Baggage Performance, from British Airways who will discuss the benefits they have realized by migrating to using a mobile, digital reflighting solution. Lastly, Alex Peirce, Brock Solutions’ SmartSuite Product Manager, will discuss the ongoing initiatives at IATA, including RFID, RP1745 changes, and Baggage XML, to further improve baggage processes, thereby reducing mishandled bags and repatriating delayed bags more quickly.

New Ways of Visualizing and Monitoring BHSs
Innovation is crucial for growth, success and survival.  Baggage Handling System (BHS) status and performance has been viewed the same way for many years.  It’s time to push the envelope and look at things differently.  This session will present three innovative technologies that are changing the way BHSs are visualized and monitored.


Travis Cox, Co-Director of Sales Engineering from Inductive Automation will present how Ignition is pushing the HMI platform to new levels.  Mark Holbrook, SmartSort Product Manager from Brock Solutions will present how Brock’s new web-based BHS Map can be used to visualize bag status and real-time location like never before.  Finally, Aaron Novak, Engineering Manager from Brock Solutions will present how our video capture tool is being used to improve system performance at the controls level with possible future integration into the HMI and the rest of SmartSuite.

Using Data to Drive and Enhance Business Performance
The goal of every organization is to turn data into information and information into insight. As technology evolves, there is no shortage of data that should provide insight into how our airports and airlines are operating. We collect passenger, baggage and flight data at various stages throughout their journeys – are we taking full advantage?  Led by Mark Stokes, Transportation and Logistics Business Unit Manager at Brock Solutions, this panel will focus on turning data into information that will provide insight into real-time operations enabling their organizations to be proactive as well as reactive:


  • Mark Zessin, Director of Airport Ramp and Baggage Performance and Strategy, will highlight how United Airlines is using data to streamline their resource utilization.
  • Zach Varwig, Director of Innovation and Strategy, Faith Group, will talk about the growing API environment within the Aviation space, and the potential collaboration between Airports and Airlines which improves data analysis capabilities and ultimately, passenger services.
  • Darin Juby, Director – Baggage Services will discuss how Toronto Pearson is using baggage and BHS data to optimize their assets.

Trends in BHS Innovation
In recent years, the industry has seen an increase in innovation with the development and use of newer conveying technologies for Baggage Handling Systems.  In particular, there has been an increase in BHS designs using Individual Carrier System (ICS) solutions and automated guided vehicle (AGV) technology.  Historically, alternate technologies have been more widely used internationally, with limited applications in the North America BHS industry.  Recently however, other innovative solutions have been installed or are in the process of being installed at several airports in the United States and Canada.


BHS OEM’s are making significant investments in bringing these new innovations to market and this session will cover what this means for you.  Four industry-leading BHS OEMs: BEUMER Corporation, Jervis B. Webb (Daifuku), Siemens PP&AL and Vanderlande Industries, will provide an overview of their solutions, and give their perspective on what situations are a good fit for alternate technologies and which are not, the advantages and disadvantages, and things to consider when designing a BHS.

The Future of AI, Machine Learning and IoT for Airports and Airlines
The age of Artificial Intelligence is upon us.  Many companies are investing heavily in this technology and terms like AI, Machine Learning, IoT, and Predictive Analytics have become the buzz words across multiple sectors.  The Airport and Airline industry is no exception.


In this session, Alexander Wong, Canada Research Chair in Artificial Intelligence and Medical Imaging from the University of Waterloo will introduce the concepts of Artificial Intelligence, and the possibilities that lie ahead in our future.  Julie Morin, Internet of Things-IoT Sales Lead for Microsoft Corporation, will discuss what Microsoft is focusing on for IoT and Artificial Intelligence in the Airport and Airline industry.  Nathan Sims, Project Manager – Aviation & Federal, Burns & McDonnell will explore the need for transforming the passenger journey through collaborative innovation.  Finally, Mark Stokes, Business Unit Manager at Brock Solutions will present an application using vision technology and machine learning in a solution for passenger tracking at airport security checkpoints.


Wednesday, October 10th, 2018
📍 Brock Solutions Head Office
Join us at Brock Solutions’ head office for a Reception and Open House on Wednesday from 4:30 PM – 8:00 PM.

Thursday, October 11th, 2018
📍 Crowne Plaza Kitchener-Waterloo
Brock Solutions’ Airport Automation Summit will be held at the Crowne Plaza Kitchener-Waterloo and is also the preferred hotel for Summit Attendees. In addition to a conference centre, they have a complete 24-hour business centre, and free wi-fi in every room.


Note: All room blocks are now full. If you require assistance making a reservation, please contact

The Crowne Plaza
The Crowne Plaza Kitchener-Waterloo is the summit venue and headquarter hotel. Brock corporate guests looking for Kitchener or Waterloo hotels appreciate the Crowne Plaza for it’s downtown location, and quick access from Highways 401 & 8 and Brock Solutions’ Kitchener headquarters. The preferred rate for a Brock Solutions’ guest starts at $139.00. We recommend using the online booking tool to ensure you get the best rate possible. If you call in your reservation, make sure you mention the “Brock Solutions’ Summit” when booking.

The Walper Hotel
The Walper Hotel is located within a one minute walk of the Summit Venue (Crowne Plaza). To book your room at The Walper Hotel, we recommend using the online booking tool. Use GROUP CODE “BROCKS2018” to ensure you get the best rate possible.

Car Rentals
Avis and Budget are the preferred car rental partner for the Brock Solutions 2018 Summit. The preferred daily rate for an intermediate size vehicle (before applicable taxes) for Brock Solutions guests will be $35 at Toronto Pearson Airport, $41 at Buffalo Niagara Airport, and $34 for local Kitchener rentals. To take advantage of these discounted rates, please use the online booking tool here to make a reservation with Avis or here to make a reservation with Budget. Special rates will be commence 7 days before the event and continue until 7 days after the event. You can also phone directly to make a reservation.

Please make sure to quote the Avis and Budget discount codes. Avis phone number: 1 (800) 331-1600 Avis discount code (AWD#) C790399 Budget phone number: 1 (800) 842-5628 Budget discount code (BCD#) A419499

Registration is now closed.

We look forward to seeing you again in two years.

2016 Airport Automation Summit

dan-vandervenne-brock-solutions-summitThe 2016 Airport Automation Summit was our largest yet, with attendance by over 175 industry professionals. It included interesting topics such as:
•   Self Tagging & Bag Drop
•   Controls Innovation
•   Enterprise-Wide Information Monitoring
•   And More…

With over 99% of attendees saying that they would attend again and would recommend it to their colleagues, we are expecting the 2018 Summit to be bigger than ever. Here are some comments from our previous attendees:

To see photos from the 2016 Airport Automation Summit, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Which airport is closest to the conference?
A: Toronto Pearson International (YYZ) is the main airport with regular arrivals and departures from most major Canadian and U.S. cities.

Q: When should I book my return flight?
A: The Oktoberfest event on Thursday evening is well attended and we hope you join us for all the fun. Since this can last until late in the evening, we recommend that you book your return flight for late morning or in the afternoon on Friday.

Q: What time should I arrive?
A: If you are attending the SmartSuite Users Group meeting, registration will open at 10:30am on Wednesday, October 10, 2018 at Brock Solutions’ headquarters. If you plan to arrive on Wednesday morning, we advise you to give yourself a minimum of 2 hours to accommodate the commute from the airport.

The Opening Night Reception, held at Brock Solutions’ headquarters, will kick-off at 4:30pm and run until 8:00pm. Registration for the 2018 Airport Automation Summit will open at 8:00am on Thursday, October 11, 2018 at the Crowne Plaza. Please plan to arrive a minimum of 15 minutes before the conference to give yourself time to check-in and settle down. We do not recommend flying into the city the morning of the Summit as traffic and/or other conditions may delay your commute.

Click here to read more frequently asked questions.

Why Attend?

Brock Solutions’ Airport Automation Summit is designed to allow our customers, partners, and other industry professionals to network and share valuable information with the goal of generating real benefits for their organizations. Still need convincing?

Here are 5 more reasons why you should attend Brock Solutions’ Airport Automation Summit:

  1.   Hear from airport and airline executives and other business leaders in the industry.
  2.   Share cross industry knowledge and experiences with companies from around the world.
  3.   Learn best practices from top industry professionals.
  4.   Explore the latest technology and software solutions for the airport and airline industry.
  5.   Excellent networking opportunity with 99% of previous attendees saying they would attend again.

The Airport Automation Summit served as an excellent platform for an exchange of ideas. It was a great opportunity for various stakeholders to come together, network, and to hear about current industry trends. Most definitely a well-executed and worthwhile event.

– Martin Hoy

Senior Director Customer Service Information Systems, Air Canada


As a part of Brock’s Airport Automation Summit, we also encourage attendees to join us at Kitchener/Waterloo’s famous Oktoberfest, or Brocktoberfest as it has come to be known in the airport and airline industry. Participants will experience authentic German culture, cuisine, and entertainment. Kitchener, formerly named Berlin, is home to the largest Bavarian festival in North America. Founded in 1969, Oktoberfest is a nine day event that includes 40 different family and cultural events. This is a unique and fun-filled networking experience that is not to be missed. For more details on this world class event please visit:

SmartSuite Users Group

Brock Solutions’ SmartSuite Users Group meeting is an invite-only event that provides a forum for SmartSuite users and Brock Solutions’ development teams to exchange knowledge, share ideas, and network with industry peers. The goal of this event is for you to be able to provide feedback on SmartSuite and help us to focus our future development on features that bring you value and enhance your overall user experience. Invitations have been sent. Please be sure to check your Junk folder. If you are a SmartSuite user and have not received your invitation, please contact