Air traffic control graduates strengthen safety in our skies

10 Nov 2014

Thirty-eight new air traffic controllers will take up their positions across the country to keep Australia’s skies safe after their graduation from an intensive 18-month training course.

The graduates join more than 1000 current Airservices air traffic controllers who play a crucial role in managing the safe and efficient flow of aircraft into, out of, and across Australian airspace.

Airservices General Manager Learning Academy, Linda Spurr said the graduating controllers have had the opportunity to learn in Airservices state-of-the-art training facilities including the 360 degree full immersion tower simulator.

“Each graduate has spent hundreds of hours in both the classroom and our enroute or tower training simulators. The tower simulator uses large screens to depict the views out of the tower windows and simulate aircraft, vehicles, lighting and weather conditions to provide realistic scenarios to our air traffic control trainees. Our en route simulator is more sophisticated than ever before and is very aligned to our operational environment,” Ms Spurr said.

“We congratulate each graduate on their achievement in developing the necessary skills to become air traffic controllers and wish them well in their careers at Airservices.”

Graduate Guy Lewin is the recipient of the Don Charlwood Award, an award presented to the most outstanding graduate, demonstrating technical and professional excellence. Guy works in East Coast Services North–Capricornia and is based in Brisbane.

Airservices Executive General Manager Air Traffic Control, Greg Hood, said the next generation of air traffic controllers will play a pivotal role in the future of Australian aviation.

“This latest group of graduating controllers will help manage the rapid growth of air traffic predicted to occur in Australian skies to 2020 and beyond.

“They will also help implement safety enhancements and measures that reduce delays for passengers, improve efficiency and reduce fuel burn for airline customers,” Mr Hood said.

The graduates obtained a Diploma of Aviation (Air Traffic Control), a nationally recognised qualification issued by Airservices Australia. The graduating controllers obtained their initial Air Traffic Control licence, rating and endorsement over the past six months.

Airservices administers 11 per cent of the world’s total airspace and safely manages air traffic operations for more than 90 million passengers on more than four million flights each year, with these numbers expected to increase by 60 per cent in the next 15 years and double by 2030.