The statistics tell the story. Over the last four years, there have been 1,475 runway-incursion incidents at controlled airports in the U.S., an average of one a day. Data from other countries are not readily available, but experts say incursions are on the rise worldwide. While the Federal Aviation Administration has focused primarily on pilot education initiatives to warn of the dangers of incursions, avionics makers have other ideas.
Airports, Heliports and FBOs » Airports
New developments at airports including regulations and noise issues; legal disputes; openings, acquisitions and mergers.
The European Aviation Safety Agency and the Direction Générale de l’Aviation Civile of France have issued approvals for limited use of Honeywell’s runway awareness and advisory system (RAAS) in Europe. The EASA STC covers RAAS installation on the Learjet 31, 35, 36, 55 and 60, while the French authority approved the system for the Boeing 777.
The EMAS arrestor bed at the end of Teterboro (New Jersey) Airport’s Runway 6 is difficult to see at night, and two jets have taxied into the bed, made of porous concrete by ESCO’s Engineered Material Arresting System Division and designed to stop aircraft traveling at high speed. On October 25, a Challenger taxied into the EMAS after landing, one week after installation.
The deal brokered last week by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice to relax travel restrictions to and from the Gaza Strip did not go far enough to reopen Yasser Arafat International Airport, as Israel continues to resist pressure to allow the Palestinians their own means of international airlinks they need to rebuild their economy.
While crewmen work on a United Arab Emirates air force F-16E/F after a demo flight, in the background construction workers are busy erecting a series of new hangars for Emirates’ new Airbus A380s. In addition to the hangars, Dubai International Airport is adding a new terminal and concourses to handle 70 million passengers.
Transportation communications and systems engineering specialist Arinc opened an office here in Dubai just after the 2003 Dubai air show. The move has proved to be a powerful springboard for securing work throughout the Middle East, since earlier this year the company won a major airport information technology contract for Dubai International Airport.
QinetiQ’s radar system that can detect very small items of potentially dangerous debris on airport runways has just completed a successful demonstration at Dubai International Airport. Called Tarsier, the all-weather, 24/7 system performed fully automatic detection and location of test debris items such as plastic and glass bottles, metal bolts and a small section of carbon fiber grill.
Etihad Airways will take delivery of its first 777-300ER on January 6, almost three months later than originally planned. The Abu Dhabi-based airline placed an order for five of the airplanes last December, at which time Boeing promised to deliver the first this past October, followed by two each in November and December.
For an airport, an annual throughput of 25 million passengers is enough to win respect, especially when it is the result of well-above-average, double-digit growth each year. Yet, in thriving Dubai, it seems that today’s figures are only young green shoots from which tomorrow’s branches will grow.
Perhaps contrary to the impressions of outsiders, flying business aircraft into and within the Middle East is not difficult. At least that seems to be the consensus of those who arrange planning and handling for international flight operations in this part of the world.