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|January 30, 1999||
ECIL to automate Indian airportsElectronic Corporation of India Limited, which has considerable expertise in automatic message switching systems, has taken up the task of automating and modernising some Indian airports.
These include international airports at New Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta and Madras.
On January 14, the AAI had commissioned Raytheon Air Traffic Control System to modernised air traffic services at New Delhi's Indira Gandhi Airport.
Two vital sub-systems of the world-class equipment were supplied by ECIL through its in-house research and development efforts.
Integrated with the 'automated message switching system', ECIL has also delivered to the AAI, the 'automatic self-briefing system' that is used by pilots.
This maintains a database of various meteorological conditions and the operational information for the airports such as runway condition, landing equipment and availability.
The facility also maintains flight plan and flight permission database for clearance of flights landing at the international airport, New Delhi.
This enables the pilot to get a self-briefing on his flight conditions and schedule before taking off.
Hitherto a complicated process, this has now been made easy. All that the pilot has to do is file the flight plan and he has all the information on a printout.
The 'automatic message switching system' developed by ECIL handles all air traffic control and air traffic safety messages by routing them from various parts of the world to the required destinations in a store-and-forward mode.
It is a hot stand-by ultra-reliable system, with more than 99.99 per cent availability and has been designed indigenously.
ECIL had initially developed the project for the Department of Telecommunications, interlinking 128 nodes connected to the overseas communications centre at Bombay to handle international message traffic.
ECIL had later worked on a comprehensive message switching system for the army in 1980. Subsequently, it had taken up and completed 14 systems each for the army and the air force. All the facilities have been networked.
India has about 74 airports, including some remote ones which are used on and off for specific purposes. Of these, 52 airports are regularly in operation. It would be ideal if all the airports were properly interconnected and had the facility for messages relating to takeoff, landing, flight planning, weather, communications, navigation and information from international and domestic airport switching systems.
These message systems help process operational messages through the integrated system. The message is processed and routed through to the facility concerned, Wg Cdr Chandrashekar said.
Though ECIL developed the AMSS at the New Delhi airport about two years ago, it could not be put to use as the radar facility developed by Raytheon were discovered to have some technical snags.
In fact, radar systems will become obsolete soon and traffic management will be by satellite-based navigation and surveillance systems.
"We have already completed the modernisation of air traffic management system at Madras and are in the process of developing a futuristic automated surveillance system based on computerised air traffic management using GPS based navigation and surveillance. This system will be useful for tracking aircraft over the oceans, providing 100 per cent surveillance,'' he said.
Chandrashekar said ECIL has also developed 'airport terminal information systems' and 'automatic self-briefing systems' for pilots. These will be implemented in a phased manner at Calcutta and Madras airports.
ECIL Telecom Division Head S Sengupta says there is a great opportunity for ECIL to offer such systems both in India and abroad. ECIL has already delivered a similar system for the Tribhuvan International Airport in Nepal.
- Compiled from the Indian media
- Compiled from the Indian media
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