Human error, bad weather and ineffective ground radar can all have devastating consequences for airport safety, possibly leading to a huge number of fatalities. New complementary airport safety systems currently under development promise to avoid such incidences their potential impact in the future.
“Though technology has come a long way in recent years toward improving airport safety, it is evident that current systems using ground radar or cameras to detect aircraft and other vehicles suffer from deficiencies,” says Haibin Gao, a researcher at Saarland University in Germany.
New, more efficient and more accurate systems are therefore needed to prevent accidents and increase capacity. So what are these technologies and just how much will they improve safety? “They are all very innovative and they are likely to have a vast impact on the future of air traffic control at airports: they could even replace ground radar,” says Gao, who is developing arrays of magnetic sensors to detect the slight influence on the Earth’s magnetic field caused by the metal body structure of aircraft and ground vehicles, allowing it to pinpoint their exact location in the ISMAEL project.
Tara Morris | alfa
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