Civilian and military air traffic management can be provided remotely using smart technologies through Frequentis’ Remote Digital Tower
The towers have been installed in the UK, Europe and as far afield as New Zealand by the Austrian company. They are tested and used at airports with complex ATC operations, safely managing IFR and VFR operations from remote locations.
The Remote Digital Tower enables remote provision of ATC services from different geographic positions, using a multitude of local sensors, including visual and infrared cameras and surveillance solutions based on conventional radar, multilateration or ADS-B to provide the situational awareness needed for the controller to safely operate an airport.
Towers reduce need for capital outlay
Sasha Wirfs, Defence Global Sales Manager ATM said the Remote Digital Towers were able to safely replace control of the main tower without the capital investment needed for their replacement.
He added the solution was also used by commercial airports as a back up should the main tower be out of operation.
“For example, Jersey Airport is a contingency solution,” he explained. “So you would use that in case you cannot use your conventional tower but its very expensive if you have to close down your airport, so that’s one of the main reasons to keep your airport going 24/7.”
System uses video processing and AI
Smarter remote solutions are achieved using advanced video processing with machine intelligence such as deep learning and artificial intelligence. Wirfs said this could lead to safer operations, even remotely: “The extra safety is independent from the distance you have between the controllers at the airport. We are increasing the safety by adding augmented reality, so we bring all the information available flight data into the screeen that the controllers are looking at - its different from looking out of the information because you don’t have that information.
As well as working with civilian ATC operations, Frequentis working with military such as the Brazilian Air Force and US Marine Corps and Navy. The system enables air traffic control personnel to be placed away from airfields in protected locations.