Defence and security company Saab has together with the LFV Group received an award for their joint work on remote air traffic management (ATM). The award is given by the european development project SESAR, where the air traffic control of the future is developed.
“There is a great interest in the ability to control the air traffic at several airports from a single air traffic control central,” says Ann Kullberg, business developer at Saab and responsible for Saab’s participation within SESAR.
“We are at an advanced stage in the development, which is acknowledged by this award that we have been given together with the LFV Group.”
The assignment of the award-winning project is to define the requirements of the operative concept of remote air traffic management. The project is managed by the LFV Group in collaboration with Saab and air traffic services in Norway, Estonia and Finland. Saab’s role in the project is to support the LVF Group and the other participants with technical solutions.
“This the most accomplished european project and the one that is closest to realization within the scope of SESAR. The project follows the time plan, delivers measurable results and and has been documented in a way that enables air traffic safety authorities to take active part,” Says Patrick Ky Executive Director of the SESAR Joint Undertaking.
Remote air traffic management makes it possible to ensure ATM also at smaller airports that only receives limited air traffic. In december of 2010, Saab signed a contract with the LFV Group to provide the airports of Sundsvall and Örnsköldsvik with remote air traffic management.
Remote air traffic management- an introduction
Camera and sensors are placed at the airports and everything that is registered by them is conveyed in real-time to the air traffic management central where it is projected in a 360º view.
The air traffic controller in the air traffic management central expedites the air traffic in the same way that it would be done from an ordinary control tower. Safety is of the outmost importance; and in many ways, modern technology improves the safety:
• The cameras can register changes in the image that will make hazards like unauthorized vehicles or foreign objects on the runway easier to detect. By use of cameras, the air traffic controller can also record occurrences in the airspace and the area surrounding the airport, and then replay them in case of an incident.
• A camera with automatic tracking, that can zoom in up to 36 times, replaces the traditional binoculars in a regular control tower.
•A video tracking function automatically detects incoming aircraft and marks them on the screen, facilitating the process of following them for the air traffic controller even in limited visibility.
• The contours of the runway, buildings and other objects at the airport can be marked on the screens, enabling the air traffic controller to see them even in limited visibility.
• Images from the Zoom camera, radar and weather information are integrally presented in the 360º view, continuously observed by the air traffic controller.
This function is similar to that of the head-up display in a fighter aircraft.
The air traffic controller does not need to shift focus in order to see the information
SESAR is an european air traffic management development project.
In the year 2020 the goal is to provide the european airspace with:
• triple the current capacity
• increase the security by a factor of 10
• decreased effect on the environment by 10 % per flight
• 50 % air traffic management cost reduction.
Videos showing Saab Remote Tower can be downloaded here:
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