The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has awarded a contract to Saab Sensis, the US subsidiary of Saab, to provide technologies for the Airport Surface Surveillance Capability (ASSC) programme at nine airports in the country.

As part of the programme, the FAA initially awarded $5m of the total $54m contract for five years, which can be extended under an option contract worth $65m for a total contract value of $119m. The ASSC will enhance the surface situational awareness and superior warning of potential runway incursions to nine US airports for increased safety and efficiency, and includes options for additional sites.

Saab Sensis vice-president and general manager Ken Kaminski said that the company will draw on its successful ASDE-X programme and strong working relationship with the FAA to improve the airports’ surface safety.

"The system uses technologies already certified for use in the national airspace system for an efficient, cost-effective solution," Kaminski said.

Under the contract, Saab will deliver its multilateration, safety logic conflict detection and alerting software, air traffic controller working positions, and recording/playback functionality at each ASSC site. The ASSC system will process automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast data, along with other sensor sources for isolated, fused viewing of the airport runways and taxiways.

The ASSC system architecture also facilitates future airport surface safety enhancements, such as runway status lights and airport surface movement data distribution, to further approved systems and clients.

The ASSC systems will be installed at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, Andrews Air Force Base, Northern Kentucky International Airport, Cleveland Hopkins Airport and Kansas City International Airport. Other airports include Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, Pittsburgh International Airport, Portland International Airport and San Francisco International Airport.

The company has already deployed its airport surface detection equipment Model X, which is the FAA’s primary runway situational awareness system in 35 US airports.