The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) has awarded a new contract to the UK air navigation service provider (ANSP) NATS for the development of a new smart digital tower prototype.
Under the contract, valued at approximately $7m, NATS will be responsible for building the prototype over a period of 22 months.
Following this, CAAS will evaluate the operational feasibility of a smart digital tower before determining its suitability and robustness for Singapore Changi Airport.
To date, development works on smart digital tower operations were focused only on airports with low-to-moderate air traffic volume.
CAAS director-general Kevin Shum said: “We look forward to working closely with NATS to co-develop the operational procedures and processes required to deploy the smart digital tower for Changi Airport.
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“We are excited by the possibilities and remain committed to working with our industry partners to provide quality air traffic management services without compromising on safety and service levels.”
Integrated with several assistive functionalities and features, a smart digital tower is expected to improve air traffic management (ATM) and safety of runway and ground operations, as well as to enhance operational efficiencies at the airport.
As part of the project, NATS will install multiple fixed-position cameras to feed live video images onto a large video wall that will provide a similar view to what air traffic controllers can see from a physical control tower.
The prototype will be integrated with advanced camera and video stitching technologies that would provide better display of information.