Safety boost at Brisbane Airport - new surface movement radar

- Brisbane, Australia

Air traffic controllers at Brisbane Airport will now be able to see and identify every aircraft across all runways and taxiways following the commissioning of an advanced surface movement and ground control system by Airservices.

The system provides automatic identification of all suitably equipped vehicles and aircraft at Brisbane Airport for the first time. 

Airservices Executive General Manager Air Traffic Control, Jason Harfield, said the $35m Advanced Surface Movement Guidance and Control System (A-SMGCS) project would provide an electronic picture of what is happening on the ground at any time through the collection of surveillance data from multiple sources.

“This will lead to improved airport safety and reliability by providing air traffic controllers with an enhanced picture of all movements on runways and taxiway areas.”

“The new system offers better conflict detection for controllers and a lower risk of surface collisions,” Mr Harfield said.

“It also improves the reliability and efficiency of airport operations during bad weather and at night, when distances from our control tower can make visual monitoring more challenging.”

The system will add to controllers’ situation awareness by predicting conflicts between vehicles and aircraft, and multiple aircraft movements, before they can occur. Visual and aural alarms alert controllers to potential problems and allow them to take early corrective action.

”While this technology does not replace the visual monitoring our controllers conduct, it adds another layer of safety to our operations at Australia’s third busiest capital city airport,” Mr Harfield said. 

The commissioning follows extensive system testing and controller training.

A-SMGCS is also in use at Melbourne and Sydney Airports and is due to be rolled out in Perth later this year.


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