BRISBANE’s metropolitan airport, Archerfield, has been awarded the Corporate Project of the Year award by the Australian Airports Association (AAA) for its airspace optimisation project.
The AAA award recognises project innovation that provides major benefits to an airport’s operations. The Archerfield Airspace Optimisation Project was instigated by the management team at Archerfield Airport Corporation (AAC) and Keith Tonkin of Aviation Projects, who was engaged by AAC to implement the various project phases.
The project involved significant upgrading of the airport’s airspace and flight procedures, enabling more efficient and safer operation of all aircraft up to performance category C, flying at up to 140 knots.
AAC general manager, Heather Mattes said the improvements would ensure that AAC meets increasing demand from operators of the larger, higher performance aircraft that currently operate from the airport.
“Archerfield Airport will be able to support aircraft operations under instrument meteorological conditions, 24 hours a day, before and after the commissioning of Brisbane Airport’s new parallel runway,” Ms Mattes said. “Improvements completed to date include new straight-in instrument approaches to runway 10L for up to performance category C aircraft, less restrictive standard instrument departure ceiling and visibility requirements, adding a broadcast capability to the automatic weather station and a webcam that live streams the current weather situation at the airport.”
Ms Mattes said the project continues to be rolled out in 2018.
New initiatives include optimising the existing approach to runway 28R; upgrading the approach to runway 10L for use by performance category C aircraft; implementing and protecting category C circling areas; introducing Baro-VNAV approaches to runway 10L/28R – due for flight validation in February – and measures such as reducing airport obstacles and protection of the airspace.
THE A³ arm of Airbus has completed a series of full-scale test flights by its all-electric, self-piloted vertical take-off and landing aircraft, named Vahana.
Vahana, as reported by A³ by Airbus, reached a height of 5m before descending safely at the Pendleton UAS Range in Oregon. Its first flight, with a duration of 53 seconds, was self-piloted and the vehicle completed a second flight the following day.
The aircraft is Airbus’s innovative approach to future urban air mobility.
“Today we are celebrating a great accomplishment in aerospace innovation,” Vahana project executive Zach Lovering said.
“In just under two years, Vahana took a concept sketch on a napkin and built a full-scale, self-piloted aircraft that has successfully completed its first flight. Our team is grateful for the support we’ve received from A³ and the extended Airbus family, as well as our partners including MTSI and the Pendleton UAS Range.”
The Vahana project is being developed at A³, the Silicon Valley innovation outpost of Airbus Industrie. Vahana aims to ‘democratise’ personal flight and answer the growing need for urban mobility by leveraging the latest technologies in electric propulsion, energy storage, and machine vision, according to Airbus reports.
“Vahana’s first flight demonstrates Airbus’ unique ability to pursue ambitious ideas quickly, without compromising the quality and safety for which the company is well-known,” A³ CEO and former project executive of Vahana, Rodin Lyasoff said. “For A³, it proves that we can deliver meaningful innovation with aggressive project timetables, to provide a real competitive advantage for Airbus.
“Our focus now is on celebrating the work of the tireless Vahana team while maintaining the momentum of this accomplishment.”
Founded in May 2015, A³ (pronounced ‘A-cubed’) is the advanced projects outpost of Airbus in Silicon Valley. Mr Lyasoff said A³ concentrated on projects “centred around three traits: speed, transparency and a commitment to culminating in productisable demonstrators or demonstrators at convincing scale”.
AIR SERVICES Australia is preparing to install supporting infrastructure and equipment at Brisbane Airport to enable the operation of the new second runway under construction.
New aviation navigation system equipment and aviation rescue firefighting services are required to support the introduction of the new runway, an Air Services Australia spoksesperson said.
Additional airfield equipment and infrastructure is set for installation, including navigational aids at each end of the new runway and a new fibre optic network. Civil works proposed in this project will support these installations.
Additionally a new Aviation Rescue Fire Fighting Service will be constructed to support the new runway.
The project is scheduled to be completed in line with the new runway being operational in 2020. The estimated cost of the project is $24.92 million.
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works conducted public and in-camera hearings and took submissions in November.