London City .. The first airport to control air traffic through a digital tower
London City .. The first airport to control air traffic through a digital tower

London City International Airport is known as the first major airport in the world that can use a digital tower to fully control air traffic.

Aviation technology heralded a major technological breakthrough in air traffic operation and management.

From the biometric ascent gate to the parallel reality of displaying these radial personality messages, the catch-up situation has changed dramatically in the past two decades.

The new system enables personnel stationed in a Hampshire village 144 kilometers away to use modern digital masts to guide aircraft during takeoff and landing.

The 50-meter-high tower is equipped with up to 16 high-resolution cameras that provide the ground console with a 360-degree panoramic view of London City Airport.

Array camera has two cameras that can provide a telephone function of a conventional control tower.

There are metal screws at the top of the tower that protect the cameras from birds. Each camera has a self-cleaning mechanism to prevent insects and foreign objects from blocking the lens.

These images are sent in real time over a fiber optic network to employees of NATS, a major provider of British Air Navigation Services in Hampshire.

Live sound is transmitted from the airport to the new control center so that the controller can continue to hear the plane's engine and back pressure while landing while preparing for the flight.

Air traffic controllers display real-time video broadcasts on 14 panoramic screens covered with data such as call sign, altitude, weather data and speeds in and out of airport aircraft.

The digital tower is designed to improve efficiency and allow for smooth expansion in the future as new technology gives air traffic controllers more data so air traffic controllers can handle more aircraft takeoffs and landings.

According to London City Airport, all flights on the summer flight schedule can be remotely transported using the new digital control tower.

In the wake of the deadlock during the pandemic, the government said, smart infrastructure could help meet projected growth in passenger demand and the resumption of international travel in May.

Once flying resumes after the pandemic, the airport will be able to handle 45 aircraft per hour, up from 40 in 2019.

This version follows previous tests of the system at the Swedish airports Örnsköldsvik and Sundsvall.

The plan to build the tower dates back to 2016 when the city realized it had to invest heavily in the old watchtower to go ahead with a £ 500m expansion plan to install ever larger aircraft.

Given the efficiency advantages of the new remote control technology from the Swedish company Saab, I decided to create a new device.

The idea of ​​the new tower has attracted the interest of major airports as Heathrow, the UK's busiest airport, is considering using remote control towers in its future plans.

It should be noted that the city of London is the smallest airport in London: before the pandemic, the city of London used to receive 5 million passengers every year, most of them on business trips to European destinations such as Frankfurt and Amsterdam.

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