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New satellite-based precision landing procedure available at Zurich Airport

On 14 October 2014 the first landing using the precision landing system GBAS (ground-based augmentation system) was used by a Swiss Airbus 320 at Zurich Airport. The new landing procedure now enables a GPS approach from the north on runway 14 even in low cloud or poor visibility.

Satellite-based GPS technology has been in use at Zurich Airport since March 2011. This advanced approach procedure guides aircraft on to runway 14 from the north. The new ground-based augmentation system (GBAS) installed on the airport site increases the accuracy of the GPS signal so that aircraft with the appropriate equipment will be able to use the GPS technology to land even in low cloud or when visibility is poor. Moreover, the new system establishes the  technical requirements for introducing further environmentally and noise-optimised procedures in future, such as continuous descent approaches (CDA).

The new approach on runway 14, whose flight routes correspond to the current ones, will be approved for regular operation with the official publication on 16 October 2014.

By investing four million Swiss francs, Flughafen Zürich AG is currently the owner of the Honeywell GBAS ground station and is underscoring its role as a leading airport in the development and introduction of state-of-the-art satellite-based flight procedures. The system is operated – like all navigation systems in Switzerland – by Skyguide, which developed the new procedure in cooperation with Flughafen Zürich AG.

Greater aviation efficiency with SESAR
As part of the SESAR ATM (Single European Sky Air Traffic Management Research) project, leading representatives of European air traffic controllers, aircraft manufacturers, airport operators, airlines and systems manufacturers for the aviation industry are working together to modernise and optimise European aviation management. As part of an airport consortium, Flughafen Zurich AG is participating in SESAR and is working on both the technical development of the GBAS as well as on the preparation of procedural and regulatory principles.

Further news and informations from the airport