San Francisco International Airport (SFO) in the US is deploying Honeywell Aerospace’s SmartPath Ground-Based Augmentation System (GBAS) technology to enhance airport efficiency.
This technology is expected to minimise aeroplane fuel usage, speed up flight times for airlines and reduce noise levels around the airport.
Honeywell SmartPath is said to be the sole certified solution internationally for GBAS.
It can minimise arrival delays and those ‘circle around the airport’ notifications travellers receive when aeroplane landings stack up.
SFO is the third US airport to install its technology after Newark Liberty Airport (EWR) and Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH).
Around nine airports globally have already installed Honeywell SmartPath.
Honeywell Aerospace sales vice-president Brian Davis said: “GBAS is the only precision landing technology mature enough to provide a viable replacement for legacy navigation aids while supporting all-weather and irregular operations.
“This technology will help SFO better manage its air traffic for decades to come and those using and living near SFO will see immediate benefits when GBAS goes online late this year.”
By sending digital data to the aeroplane, SmartPath provides accurate navigation and forms direct flight routes to and from airports.
It optimises the distance needed to execute the approach, reducing flight times along with fuel and emissions.
It helps in minimising noise as it can have numerous precision approach paths with tailored glide paths and precise, repeatable flight tracks.
Furthermore, SmartPath cuts down operating expenses for airlines, airport operators, and air navigation service providers.
One GBAS station can handle all runways at an airport, helping pilots to make efficient approaches and landings.
Honeywell SmartPath has the ability to offer up to 48 separate approaches simultaneously across all runway ends. The traditional Instrument Landing System provides a single-precision approach to only one runway end.
This week, SFO opened the next phase of the $2.4bn Harvey Milk Terminal 1.
This new phase features seven new departure gates, which will accommodate both domestic and international flights.