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ATC Tower Visibility

Wed Aug 30, 2006 4:17 am

With today airport developments the airfields are bigger and bigger... do the ATC controllers have to have a clear line of sight to all airfield? Can someone point me out what are the minimum requirements for ATC tower visibility (good visibility operations).

There's a new FAA order on ATC siting for new towers with lines of sight angles, etc, but is it acceptable that some portions of taxiway/apron are not visible... at least the controller cannot see the pavement of those areas due to a building or so. What are the ICAO standards or other international requirements on this issues? Also if the controller can not see some portions of the airfield are there any standards on the use of CCTV cameras?

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RE: ATC Tower Visibility

Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:10 am

An indication might be that AMS has an auxiliary tower for its remote 18R/36L runway.

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RE: ATC Tower Visibility

Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:53 am

I believe all parts of the runways must be visible. This is the reason that I have heard for why Indianapolis is having to shorten the length of its crosswind runway since a FedEx sorting building partially blocks the view of the end of the runway. I'm not certain, but I think they are cutting a few hundred feet off of the 7,000ft runway.
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RE: ATC Tower Visibility

Wed Aug 30, 2006 7:42 am

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 2):
I believe all parts of the runways must be visible.

I also believe that is true as well... I know that not all portions of an airport need not be visible from the tower. If you look on an airport diagram, you may see areas identified as "not visible from tower." It's pretty interesting if you ever get to see a set of blueprints for a new hangar or something to be built, as one of the surveys shows how the "shadow" of the building will interfere with the tower's vis of a certain area--pretty cool stuff
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RE: ATC Tower Visibility

Wed Aug 30, 2006 9:44 am

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 2):
I believe all parts of the runways must be visible

Should be visible, they don´t have to be anymore. Nowadays due to rapid airport growth and so on cameras are installed which observe the parts which are out of sight. Best example. RWY 18 in FRA. The beginning is visible, then the aircraft disappeared in the forest and comes out after TO again. I think there are 13 cameras installed there.

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