EBACE Convention News

RAAS Keeps Aircraft Apart When on the Ground

 - November 29, 2006, 9:02 AM

Here at EBACE Honeywell is exhibiting its runway awareness and advisory system (RAAS), which gives the crew of an airplane the proper information to avoid making a runway incursion. “We took advantage of the EGPWS [enhanced ground proximity warning system] database, which includes runways, and developed a software program that improves the pilots’ situational awareness when on the ground or on approach to landing,” Karl Klewer, Honeywell’s avionics technical manager, told EBACE Convention News. The RAAS gives the crew aural advisories.

For example, he said, there are instances when an aircraft could enter a runway without a clearance, perhaps if the crew was confused about which runway they were approaching. Citing a theoretical situation, he said, a crew cleared to land on Runway 22L could inadvertently make an approach to Runway 22R. If that were to occur, the RAAS will make it clear which runway the aircraft is flying to.

A second example would be on takeoff. When the aircraft is lined up (within 20 degrees) on the runway, the crew can hear a “you are on Runway XYZ” advisory. The system also provides information on the remaining distance to the end of the runway.

In a third case, when taxiing in poor visibility, insufficient situational awareness can present a serious threat of an aircraft inadvertently entering a runway. When the aircraft is as close to the runway as half its width (generally around 50 feet), the aural advisory says, “Approaching Runway XYZ.”

Last, Klewer said, is the risk of taking off from a taxiway. When the aircraft is traveling above 45 knots, the RAAS will warn the pilots, saying, “Taxiway.” The system can be installed business-jet-size aircraft and larger.

The list price of the RAAS is close to $25,000, and operators have a choice between male and female voices.