Airservices keep pilots safe in the sky

1 Feb 2012

Don’t be alarmed if you see a low-flying aircraft in your area this month – chances are it’s Airservices Flight Inspection Service (FIS) checking the navigational aids used by pilots daily.

Airservices, the provider of air traffic management services throughout Australia, is responsible for conducting regular flight calibration inspections on approximately 500 navigational aids nationwide.

The inspections will see a specially-equipped twin-engine Beechcraft King Air make several approaches to an airfield to ensure the navigational equipment is operating accurately.

Using three-dimensional laser measuring equipment and GPS technology, information from the navigational aid is relayed to the aircraft and interpreted by specialist aircrew. The data is then analysed by Airservices maintenance engineers to ensure each aid is operating accurately.

The navigational equipment is crucial to the safe and efficient operation of aircraft at major and regional airports, aerodromes and airstrips.

Based in Brisbane, the service will carry out inspections on navigational equipment including terminal area radars, distance measuring equipment, non-directional beacons and instrument landing systems this month at:

  • WA – Mt Magnet and Carnarvon (1 February), Perth (4-5 February), Busselton, Gingin and Albany (7 February), Albany (8 February), Beermullah (10 February), Pearce (11-12 February), Meekathara and Newman (13 February), Learmonth, Barrow Island, Karratha, Port Headland (14 February), Broome (15 February), Derby, Curtin, Fitzroy Crossing and Halls Creek
  • (17 February);
  • Qld – Mt Isa (19 February), Gove (20 February), Charleville and Cunnamulla
  • (21 February);
  • NT – Alice Springs, Simpsons Gap and Temple Bar (17 February), Alice Springs and Wallaby (18 February), Alice Springs (19 February);
  • NSW – Sydney (25-26 February).

Note: There may be changes to the schedule if poor weather or other factors prevent the safety checks from going ahead.