UK airport to use remote digital air traffic control19/05/17Science & Technology
London City Airport will become the first in the UK to introduce a remotely operated, digital air traffic control system.
The system uses 14 high-definition cameras to give controllers a 360-degree live feed of the airfield, as well as two cameras which are able to pan, tilt and zoom to offer additional angles. Rather than occupying a control tower with a view of the runway, the operations room will be moved to Hampshire, more than 80 miles away.
The new system is part of a £350m (~€407m) expansion of the airport, and will be tested for a year from its completion in 2018 before becoming fully operational by 2019. Additional developments, including a new terminal, will be completed by 2025.
In the EU, the technology has already been in operation since 2015 at Örnsköldsvik Airport in Sweden, where it was first developed by defence and security company Saab. As well as offering a more comprehensive view of aircraft and runways, the system has safety features which can identify rogue drones and light runways at night.