March 5, 2013
Honeywell and Airports Authority of India will sign a contract on March 6 – under the US-India Aviation Cooperation Program (ACP) – for a Ground Based Augmentation System (GBAS) system at Chennai International Airport, Aerospace Diary learns. USTDA, had in 2011, concluded an agreement for $407,325 to support AAI’s efforts to install and commission a pilot at Chennai. AAI will pay approximately Rs 5 crores for the equipment, which an official says is a “discounted price.” A maintenance contract has yet to be signed.
Honeywell’s SmartPath Precision Landing System is a CAT I certified GBAS solution for precision approach and landings, enabling aircraft to fly either complex or straight-in approaches. Easy to install, it is expected to have major cost savings compared to Instrument Landing Systems (ILS). It is also more flexible than ILS – one GBAS can broadcast 26 unique approaches covering all runways at an airport. The ILS covers only one end of one runway, requiring additional installations for complete coverage.
Interestingly, last year, it was decided to set up the GBAS at Delhi airport, but the AAI had already signed an agreement with Thales which was not officially terminated. Not being on a strong wicket, the pilot project was awarded for Chennai, which according to an OEM, has “one of the most efficient teams of AAI.”
We are now hearing that Honeywell is considering using a PBN guidance from ILS to be integrated with GBAS. This project, once decided will be worked under the ACP.