Avinor, the Norwegian airport operator and air navigation services provider, opened the world’s largest Remote Towers Centre in Norway on 20 October 2020.
This important achievement would not have been possible without the R&D work performed in the SESAR Programme, where Avinor was instrumental in delivering the multiple remote tower solutions that are now being deployed at several locations in Europe.
“Aviation is the backbone of Norwegian infrastructure and ensures connectivity across vast distances,” says Knut Arild Hareide, Norwegian Minister of Transport and Communications. “Avinor’s new Remote Towers Centre located in Bodø, north of the Arctic Circle, will play an important role in maintaining a sustainable aviation structure in the future. This is a result of the collaboration between Avinor and KONGSBERG, where the companies have utilised complementing areas of expertise in order to build a system which will strengthen the aviation sector. Digitalisation is an important part of Norway’s future and we are pleased that the aviation sector leads the way in this regard.”
Dag Falk-Petersen, CEO Avinor, comments: “This is the beginning of a new era of aviation. Avinor ensures the connectivity of Norway domestically and internationally. Our goal is to develop a more effective and sustainable aviation infrastructure through digitalisation and new technology. Remote Towers will make aviation safer and more robust through utilising advanced technology. We already have two towers operating from the Remote Towers Centre and will roll out a further 13 airport towers within the next two years.”
The first tower in Norway to be run through the Remote Towers technology was rolled out in 2019, while three more towers are being implemented this year. The Remote Towers technology will be rolled out at a total of 15 airports in Norway by the end of 2022, which will be run from the centre in Bodø.
“Avinor’s Remote Towers Centre will be a world-leading centre,” says Falk-Petersen. “We experience a significant interest from the global aviation industry, seeing that our Remote Towers solution is economically sustainable and utilises cutting-edge technology.”
Geir Håøy, CEO KONGSBERG Group, adds: “Remote Towers is an impressive Norwegian innovation which will prove useful in society and emergency preparedness situations. By combining the vision, knowledge and expertise of Avinor, and the expertise and technology of KONGSBERG and the Ninox team, I am proud to write aviation history. The remote towers solution has great potential and I look forward to working with Avinor to develop the next generation of aviation safety.”
Remote Towers being tested by Royal Norwegian Air Force
In 2019, The Royal Norwegian Air Force and Avinor entered a partnership for testing the Remote Towers solution for military use in Norway.
“The digitalisation with remote towers centre is exciting and will help to develop the aviation of the future,” says Major General Tonje Skinnarland, Chief of the Royal Norwegian Air Force. “We are already working with Avinor to develop a solution that can take care of both civilian and military needs at our bases and air stations. Remote control tower services can help ensure necessary air traffic services throughout the spectrum of conflicts from peace to war.”
Learn more about remote tower solutions at the following links:
Having proved controllers can provide air traffic control services to an airport remotely, SESAR validated the feasibility of providing simultaneous services to two airports from a single location: https://www.sesarju.eu/sesar-solutions/remote-tower-two-low-density-aerodromes
Remotely-provided air traffic services for multiple aerodromes: https://www.sesarju.eu/sesar-solutions/remotely-provided-air-traffic-services-multiple-aerodromes
Part of SESAR are the projects PJ05 “Remote Tower for Multiple Airports” and PJ05-W2 “Digital Technologies for Tower”, which focus on the safe and efficient airport of the future: https://www.remote-tower.eu/
Remote tower activities: https://www.sesarju.eu/node/687
Video produced by DLR as PJ05-W2 leader on multiple remote towers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8o1ixZ0vyE