The first digital air traffic control tower is now live and in operation at NATO Air Base Geilenkirchen in Germany. The base is equipped with a state-of-the-art Saab r-TWR system. Saab’s r-TWR is the first military digital tower solution fully operational in NATO and is certified by the the German Military Aviation Authority (LufABw). NATO’s main operation base for its Boeing E-3A airborne early warning and control system fleet in Geilenkirchen, Germany will be using the Saab r-TWR in all weather conditions.
The solution will service a complex military airbase with aircraft types ranging from fighter jets to helicopters. The digital tower technology allows the airbase to be flexible and take advantage of the latest air traffic control technologies. The solution consists of a well-proven system operated from a control room at the airbase. This includes sound reproduction, high-definition cameras mounted on the mast to capture a 360-degree view of the airfield and pan-tilt-zoom cameras.
“This is an important milestone for Saab going operational with the digital air traffic solution within the military domain. The digital tower provides a flexible and scalable solution that is proven to be suitable for military airbases as well as civilian airports of all sizes,“ says Per Ahl, CEO of Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions (SDATS).
With more than 5 years’ experience of running a digital tower solution in live operation, Saab can offer the support and experience needed to implement any digital tower solution. The Saab Digital Tower was the first to be operationally certified by an ANSP. The Saab solution is used to operate the Ornskoldsvik airport from the Remote Tower Centre in Sundsvall since April 2015. A Saab Digital Tower is remotely operating the Scandinavian Mountain Airport in Sweden, the first airport to be built in Sweden since 1999. It is also the first airport in the world designed to be operated from the outset with a Virtual Tower rather than a conventional ATC tower.