Jersey Airport (IATA: JER) has become the first British airport to achieve approval for the operational use of a digital Remote Tower. This marks the first time this type of system has been used to actively control commercial aircraft movements at a British airport.
Jersey Airport currently handles around 23,000 commercial Air Transport Movements annually and is the fifth busiest British airport for corporate and general aviation traffic, with more than 45,000 movements overall. Ports of Jersey’s digital remote centre deploys technology from Frequentis AG and was achieved with project management support from Systems Interface Ltd.
The airport has achieved traffic levels of 32 movements per hour using the Remote Tower during operational trials in November 2018.
Approval for the Channel Islands based airport followed a testing period throughout 2018, which included training for all air traffic controllers. This is the first-time remote tower approval has directly involved the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is the Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP) Competent Authority for Jersey.
Les Smallwood, Ports of Jersey, senior air traffic control officer, commented: “We have worked collaboratively with both Frequentis and Systems Interface to ensure the successful delivery of Jersey Airport’s remote tower project. In addition, this involved working closely alongside EASA to ensure the provision of all regulatory and training requirements, including approved conversion training, featuring Human Factors Analysis, Human-Machine Interface (HMI) and 3D simulator training. This was all achieved prior to shadowing and live training, and as a result we’re extremely pleased with the contingency remote digital tower and have achieved a movement rate of 32 aircraft per hour during operational trials.”