Honeywell seeks to introduce SmartPath in PH

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AMERICAN conglomerate Honeywell seeks to introduce its aviation technology SmartPath to the Philippines to help decongest the country’s airports, in light of increasing air traffic growth each year.

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“The current way they do it is the aircraft controller gives the instruction to the pilot to speed up, slow down. We have a very complicated arrival path in this current system,” Honeywell Aerospace Asia Pacific Airlines Vice President Brian Davis told The Manila Times in a phone interview.

In April this year, the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation predicted that air traffic growth in the Philippines could grow by as much as 10 percent this year.

Melbourne and Sydney airports in Australia have earlier installed Honeywell’s SmartPath ground-based augmentation system (GBAS).

According to Davis, Honeywell’s SmartPath constructs an electronic highway in the sky, which sets a specific speed for each aircraft with a predetermined time of arrival. In this way, the aircraft controller will be able to guide them effectively until they reach their final destination.

“The SmartPath system uses digital technology which connects all the electronic highways in the sky all the way down to our GPS landing system,” Davis said.

“One of our partners in Honeywell designed the highways in the sky. When these two (highway and GPS landing system) are linked together, all of the aircraft are flying the exact speed. The aircraft controller will know for every single aircraft at what speed and what time the aircraft will arrive over a predetermined point in the electronic highway in the sky,” according to Davis.

SmartPath enables pilots to have different approaches in landing, such as horizontal and vertical guidance.

Aside from increasing airport capacity, the SmartPath decreases air traffic noise and reduces weather-related delays as well, Davis said, adding that the Philippines would do well to invest in aviation technologies due to its growing air traffic.

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