Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport operator Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) in India has completed the revamp of a British-era runway. 

After the refurbishment of Runway 09/27, the airport’s first runway that was built during World War II, was handed over to Air Traffic Control (ATC) for commercial operations.

With a design life of two decades, this newly rehabilitated runway is expected to handle increased air traffic movement (ATM) at pre-pandemic level.

This 2,816m-long and 60m-wide runway is in compliance with Category-I (CAT-I) Instrument Landing System (ILS), which aids pilots during airplanes’ landing in low visibility settings.

DIAL operator GMR Group deputy managing director Mr I Prabhakar Rao said: “DIAL has successfully completed the rehabilitation work of Runway 09/27 and its taxiways. The British-era runway was rehabilitated for commercial operations as part of DIAL’s effort to enhance the infrastructure and passenger experience at Delhi airport to make it future-ready.”

As part of the renovation work, the runway’s flexible pavement was milled down to a depth of 60mm and was later covered with Polymer Modified Bitumen (PMB).

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PMB is bitumen mixed with one or more polymer materials that improves the mechanical characteristics of the bitumen.

Located on the northern side of Delhi airport, Runway 09/27 includes nine taxiways, of which six are connecting taxiways while three are rapid exit taxiways (RETs).

For better efficiency, all the current lights of the runway and taxiways were replaced with LED systems.

At present, DIAL is creating 7.3km-long drains on both sides of the runway.

This will help remove runoff water from the newly transformed runway and its accompanying taxiways.

In August last year, GMR Group said that it will invest around $2.7bn to extend its existing airports as well as develop new aerodromes.