The control tower is an especially striking element which stands out against the horizontal airport landscape. In most cases, it is the airport’s hallmark and a point of reference on the horizon. The control tower, however, is a much more important building than what many people may think, especially if we take into account the work performed by the professionals inside it.
The control tower is one of the essential buildings of any airport due to both its uniqueness as well as its function.
Air traffic control in an airport and its immediate surroundings is the main function of control towers. It mainly encompasses aircraft approaching, landing, taking-off and taxiing. At airports with hundreds of operations a day, it is a particularly complex as well as essential task. The safety of aircraft operations is ensured through the use of data, analyses and on-the-spot decisions.
As is obviously the case, instrumentation has evolved greatly over the years, as have communication systems, data processing, geolocation, etc. Nonetheless, binoculars still play an important role to this day. As a matter of fact, air traffic control professionals located in the tower of each airport are the only people authorised to take decisions based solely on direct visual sightings, without the aid of instruments.
Despite this, the use of complex automated systems which enable the most usual tasks to be done without any human intervention at all is common, at least under normal circumstances. There are a lot of consoles, screens and technology that reduce manual actions to the minimum and detect conflicts even before they happen.
We have summarised the highly important role these unique buildings play in the whole set of procedures which affect flights in this infographic. We hope you enjoy it and share it with others, if you so wish.
Source: Produced internally.
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