Australia, Finland, Ireland, Netherland, Norway, Sweden & the UK have had SAAB Remote Tower Systems for years
FAA has been testing it for 2 years and needs 2 more to issue an AT Certificate
FAA doesn’t trust these ANSPs?
The below matter-of-fact announcement that, after testing since 2019 and more than 75,000 operations , the FAA EXPECTS to issue a certification Saab’s remote tower “not currently expected before the end of 2024.”
14 DECEMBER 2010
1 JUNE 2011
by Bill Carey
– June 18, 2013, 12:20 AM
1 MARCH 2013
Jun 02, 2015
19 May 2017
11 DECEMBER 2019
14 OCTOBER 2021
→ If that is not enough, the highly respected Jane’s aviation publication honored the SAAB system with its 2016 ATC Award !!!
Örnsköldsvik Airport in Sweden became the world’s first remotely managed airport in the world in April 2015 as Saab’s Remote Tower was taken into operation. Sweden’s Sundsvall Timrå Airport and Linköping City Airport will follow in 2016 and 2017 respectively. In 2015 Saab signed a contract with the Irish Aviation Authority to deliver a Remote Tower Centre to Dublin Airport and corresponding remote tower installations at Cork and Shannon Airports.
Saab and LFV received the award at Jane’s ATC Award ceremony on 7 March 2016, held in conjunction with the World ATM Congress in Madrid, Spain.
Moving on from conventional towers to digital tower technology drives change in a number of ways:
• Increased operational efficiency
• Increased productivity through centralization
• Safety enhancements
• Increased flexibility
• Reduced maintenance and enhanced systems support functions
• New ways of working for ATCO, technicians and managers
• Ability to add functions in line with the digital evolution in ATM
• New business models and services possible
In a digital tower centre, personnel handling different towers are gathered in one site, increasing availability and flexibility:
• 24H availability
• Open and close on demand
• Streamlined systems to ease training, maintenance
• Flexibility of staffing
• Back-up for each other
• Improved safety nets and tools
• Operational analysis, environmental monitoring
• System analysis and integration
Aviation has accepted that it is a global institution. That with limited exceptions, one Civil Aviation Authority should be able to rely on the technical expertise and judgements of its peers. The regulatory competence of Australia, Finland, Ireland, Netherlands, Sweden and the UK are held by the FAA in highest regard.
However, the exact same SAAB Remote Tower System as being used by these sovereigns for decades; the records of these operations are available to the US evaluators. Yet, after 2 years of testing at the Arthur Godfrey Field and REQUIRES another 2 years of assessment before the FAA will accept it. The Leesburg test is being conducted in the Commonwealth of Virginia not a foreign country for which the FAA has concerns about its ATC reliability.
IT WOULD BE FASCINATING TO SEE WHAT MORE THE FAA NEEDS TO KNOW!!!
– November 10, 2021, 12:34 PM
The FAA has declared the Saab remote tower system at Virginia’s Leesburg Executive Airport (KJYO) “operationally viable,” authorizing ATC services to continue there using this system. Leesburg has been Saab’s U.S. test site for its remote tower technology and in 2019 was granted approval from the FAA to conduct an initial operational phase, during which time certified controllers safely managed more than 75,000 operations at the airport.
Monday’s announcement “brings us even closer to an FAA-certified, lower-cost alternative for U.S. general aviation airports needing to replace their aging towers, or for busy airports similar to Leesburg seeking to add ATC services,” said Saab Inc. president and CEO Erik Smith. An FAA spokesman told AIN that agency certification of Saab’s remote tower is “not currently expected before the end of 2024.”
The system at Leesburg includes fixed high-definition cameras and controller displays, as well as maneuverable optical and infrared cameras, microphones, and signal light gun. Controllers at the remote tower have the same tools as at other ATC towers, but use live video displayed on monitors instead of direct vision to detect and direct in-view air traffic
“This milestone FAA decision has positioned the Leesburg airport—the second-busiest general aviation airport in Virginia—one step closer to permanent ATC services, while avoiding the ever-increasing expense of constructing and maintaining a conventional, multi-story ATC tower,” Saab said.
Share this article: