The first remote ATC tower in South America, provided by Frequentis, was recently inaugurated at the Santa Cruz military air base in Rio de Janeiro. The setup includes 16 high-resolution and pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras located around the air base that are linked to a wall of fourteen 55-inch high-definition monitors, providing controllers with a panoramic view and the ability to zoom the cameras up to 24 times.
Frequentis’s technology includes automated object detection and camera tracking based on image recognition. That allows automatic following of not only aircraft but also flocks of birds and animals on the taxiways and runways, reducing collision risks, according to Santa Cruz ATC commander Aviator Major Bruno Michel Marcondes Alves. “The system also permits inspection of runways, as well as visualization of strategic positions.”
It took six months to implement this first project in Santa Cruz and the experience gained will be used to develop standards for broader implementation. Brazil’s Department of Airspace Control (DECEA) said remote towers will make it possible to manage and control air traffic in hard-to-reach locations in states and cities in the Amazon region.