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TSS
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Old Control Tower Equipment

Thu Jul 23, 2020 3:22 am

I've been watching the progress of the rebuilding of SLC for a while now and I noticed there are two old, one assumes no longer in use, control towers there that are likely to be demolished soon. My question is: When a control tower is remodeled or decommissioned and replaced by a newer one, is there any sort of second-hand market for the old equipment or is it usually mothballed until being destroyed when convenient? It seems to me that while equipment might become inadequate or outdated for a busy airport like SLC, that same equipment might be 10, 20, or even 30 years more modern that what's in use at smaller airports that just don't generate the income to afford to buy brand new stuff and thus hand-me-downs from SLC might be a welcome addition. Or, are there laws and regulations in place regarding control tower equipment specifying that airports must "Buy new or do without"?
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atcdan
Posts: 38
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2017 6:52 am

Re: Old Control Tower Equipment

Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:10 am

The original ATC tower at DFW has all the equipment needed to run ATC ops in the event one of the two towers cannot he used. There is less equipment and it’s old, but it’s definitely still used from time to time.

The original tower at LAX, while currently used by airport operations, has backup duplicate equipment to be used again, in case something goes wrong in the main tower.
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VNY, DFW, LAX
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slcguy
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:09 pm

Re: Old Control Tower Equipment

Thu Jul 23, 2020 6:16 am

The two towers you are referring to at SLC are the old ATC tower on top of Terminal 1, it was decommissioned as an ATC tower in the late 1990s when the current ATC tower opened. All FAA equipment was removed at that time and it was remodeled into offices for the Dept. of Airports. The cab on top has been used by Airport Ops as the "Snow Desk" during snow removal since then. This tower has been used as a back up ATC tower a couple of times over the years but the controllers bring their own portable equipment with them.

The second tower on top of Terminal 2 is the Delta ramp tower. It was built as a dedicated ramp control/operations tower for Delta. Most all equipment in it belongs to Delta. Unknown what Delta's plan for their equipment is when the new terminal opens.
 
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Re: Old Control Tower Equipment

Tue Jul 28, 2020 4:38 am

slcguy wrote:
The two towers you are referring to at SLC are the old ATC tower on top of Terminal 1, it was decommissioned as an ATC tower in the late 1990s when the current ATC tower opened. All FAA equipment was removed at that time and it was remodeled into offices for the Dept. of Airports. The cab on top has been used by Airport Ops as the "Snow Desk" during snow removal since then. This tower has been used as a back up ATC tower a couple of times over the years but the controllers bring their own portable equipment with them.

The second tower on top of Terminal 2 is the Delta ramp tower. It was built as a dedicated ramp control/operations tower for Delta. Most all equipment in it belongs to Delta. Unknown what Delta's plan for their equipment is when the new terminal opens.


Thanks for the explanation and insider info!

Side note: As someone with more than a passing interest in architecture I've been deeply impressed by how the new SLC is designed and laid out with the idea of easy future expansion in mind from day one. Usually when designing airport terminals architects want to make a "Grand Statement", and more often than not the content of that statement is I have chosen to willfully ignore the possibility that passenger numbers at this airport might increase over time and thus have deliberately made this terminal as impossible to expand in any way as I could using the tools and materials available to me at the time of its design. Two great examples of that attitude are the old Pan Am and TWA terminals at JFK.
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