How can weather communications technology improve airport safety?

How can weather communications technology improve airport safety?

Changing weather conditions are here to stay, bringing ever increasing challenges to the aviation industry. Unexpected weather events can impact both logistics and safety, sometimes with catastrophic results.

The good news is that weather communications technology is evolving and changing too. Increases in basics like communications bandwidth allow for increased accuracy and improvements to timely forecasting, as well as a greater understanding of weather patterns and semi-predictable events. Forecasting in real-time is now a reality, which means improved safety and efficiency as well as reduced disruption for passengers and businesses.

Why is a global understanding of weather conditions so important?

Reliable, accurate information about weather events is arguably the single most important thing in flight planning operations. It impacts all aspects of airport logistics as well as passenger and crew safety. Predicting land-based conditions is becoming easier – historical facts alongside improved technology have lead to terrific inroads into understanding how the weather may behave, and its impact on airports and aircraft. The crucial element is understanding the detail, in terms of the nuance-like changes and their effect on conditions elsewhere. It’s this element that technological advances are continually seeking to understand, and improved software and communications solutions are a big part of unravelling this conundrum.

Far reaching impact of future turbulence

Turbulence causes injury. All types of turbulence are cited as being the main reason for non-fatal aircraft incidents, something that will increase for as long as severe weather remains the norm. Indeed, if the expected increase in extreme weather happens as predicted, injury from turbulence is something that may become much more prevalent. Estimates suggest that, in the US alone, the cost of turbulence already tops $100m each year and rising.

What’s the solution?

As bandwidth availability improves, then weather data can become shared more readily. Airports will enjoy increased awareness of any incidence of clear air turbulence, changes to wind speed, variation in wind direction as well as any powerful convection or other hazards. This will both increase confidence and minimise loss of revenue.

Other innovations

Global connectivity has led to other innovations in weather management. One of the most exciting is the concept of “crowdsourcing” weather details. Individual aircraft share weather data, so a clear global picture is created. Companies like IBM’s The Weather Company are working hard to make this information available at every journey point, from ground ops to the flight deck. Their Total Turbulence app is thought to be behind a dramatic reduction in turbulence related incidents by an impressive 50%. Combine applications like this, with improved airport communications and other weather prediction innovations, and the future of air safety and efficiency seems bright, despite the fluctuations in weather patterns.

What solutions does Bayanat offer?

Bayanat offers a host of creative and innovative solutions to the problems caused by increases in extreme weather. These include:

• MET Forecasting/Visualisation Systems
• Meteorological sensors
• Automated Weather Observing Systems (AWOS)
• Runway Visual Range (RVR)
• Weather RADARs
• LIDARs (Windshear/Wake Vortex Measurement)
• Thermo Dynamic Profiler/RadioMeters
• Lightning detection systems
• Radiosonde/weather telemetry systems
• Weather Decision Support Systems
• Wind Profilers

Discover more

To discover more about the solutions Bayanat offers for weather communications, and how you can maximise efficiency and improve safety, just get in touch via our contact page