RogueTrader From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (13 years 2 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 4750 times:
I have a question as to why there are 3 control towers at DFW. The (few) other airports that are busier seem to get by with one. Are they all active? At all times? Does it really contribute to safety? Isn't it a source of confusion/mistakes?
Tom in NO From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 7194 posts, RR: 32
Reply 1, posted (13 years 2 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 4702 times:
The original 1974 tower is the one in the middle of the terminal complex. Until somewhat recently, it remained the only one. Due to increased traffic, airport expansion, cramped space in the existing tower, and distant sight lines, it was decided to split up the operation, and put two towers on the far sides of the two sets of parallel runways.
With the airspace configuration at DFW, this is what made the most sense. The two towers operate independantly of each other (linked by land-lines when the need arises).
I do believe, though, that during the late night, when there is not a great deal of traffic, that the middle tower is used, and the other two are closed.
Tom in NO (at MSY)
"The criminal ineptitude makes you furious"-Bruce Springsteen, after seeing firsthand the damage from Hurricane Katrina
Johnnybgoode From Germany, joined Jan 2001, 2187 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (13 years 2 weeks 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 4672 times:
i once heard that one of the towers was exclusively operating AA´s flights. however, i find this highly unlikely since that would certainly be confusing since AA´s aircraft are not concentrating on just two or three runways.
so, does anyone if this is true or not????
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Baec777 From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 1231 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (13 years 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 4618 times:
The 3 towers right now as the 1974 current center tower really for the terminals while the other 2 other tower(East & West) controls for the runways. Sometimes the center tower cant get a closer look to the runways when there are possible accidents/mechanical problems with jets on a runway.
Jsnww81 From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 2143 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (13 years 2 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 4502 times:
The two new towers were commissioned in the early 1990s, in anticipation of the opening of two jet runways. The eastside runway (17L-35R) opened in 1996. It is quite distant from the central tower and the view of it is blocked by Delta's maintenance complex.
The proposed westside runway, which will hopefully break ground soon, presents a similar situation. Controllers in the central tower would find their view of the proposed runway completely obscured by the American hangars and the air cargo buildings. Hence the new towers.
In addition to the central tower and two main towers, there is also the AA ground control tower, and Terminals A, C and E all have their own ramp towers as well.
This is nothing new at large airports. Back in the early 1970s Love Field had ramp towers on the East and West Concourses, and the old Atlanta terminal (which closed in 1980) had three smaller towers as well.
HlywdCatft From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 5321 posts, RR: 6
Reply 9, posted (13 years 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 4459 times:
DTW (Detroit) has three towers. One is the main tower near the midfield that is used for the main ATC operations. The old control tower on the Smith Terminal is still used, but by Wayne County and Operations. Northwest has a pretty good sized tower too on the Midfield terminal.
RogueTrader From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (13 years 2 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 4456 times:
Is everyone clear hear? There are 3 active FAA control towers at DFW, this is in addition to a few mini towers located at the terminal buildings.
Mainly, I was just wondering how they do it: like does the center tower handle ground and ground only, or what? Also, when I've been spotting/listening at DFW it seems that planes fairly often change landing runways at the last minute (by their own request) without having to change tower frequencies. Furthermore, it seems the East side is a lot more active than the West side, so is the West side tower just for losers, or what?
Bacardi182 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 1091 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (13 years 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 4442 times:
I thought that only one tower was used at a time but they switch during the day because of sun conditions. For example the east tower will be used in the morning so as to have the sun at the controlers back while they can see the whole airport in front of them. I know for a fact that during some times of the day there is at least one tower that is closed.
Jhooper From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 6206 posts, RR: 11
Reply 12, posted (13 years 2 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 4422 times:
Here's what I understand: The main east complex (17C/35C, 17R/35L) are controlled by the east tower on 125.55, and ground control is handled on 121.65. The far east runways (17L/35R, 13L/31R) have a separate tower frequency but still use the east tower. The main west complex (18L/36R, 18R/36L) are controlled from the west tower on 124.15. I'm told that at night they move the main operation to the central tower because they would have to stare into bright lights from the terminals if they used the east and west towers.
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