Gold Coast Airport (GCA) has started work on the installation of a new instrument landing system (ILS) on behalf of government-owned Airservices Australia.
An ILS is a precise radio signal navigation aid featuring two antennas, which transmit signals to receivers in the cockpit of an aircraft, and allow airlines and airports to continue operations in low visibility conditions.
The antennas include a glide path tower positioned next to the runway at the northern end of the airport, and a localiser antenna deployed at the southern end.
They provide vertical and horizontal guidance to pilots landing aircraft in low visibility conditions.
GCA chief operating officer Marion Charlton said: “The ILS is an important piece of infrastructure which will improve airport reliability and in turn ensure the region is well positioned as a competitive tourism destination.
“This is a project that has been over nine years in the making for our team, so we are thrilled to have recently officially commenced works on the ILS installation.”
“We will work closely with Airservices Australia over the next 12 to 15 months to install the ILS.”
The installation of ILS at GCA will help reduce the ‘decision altitude’, which is the height at which a pilot must make the decision to continue with landing or divert the flight due to low visibility.
The system will reduce the decision height from 430ft to 280ft, enhancing pilots' ability to land aircraft in poor weather conditions.
Construction of ILS at the Australian airport is expected to be completed by the end of next year and operational by 2019.
Charlton also stated that noise abatement procedures (NAPs) have been developed to minimise the use of ILS during good weather conditions.
Image: Aerial view of Gold Coast Airport in Australia. Photo: courtesy of Gold Coast Airport.