The Federal Government, through the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), has concluded plans to install a Category 3 Instrument Landing System (ISL) at three airports in the country to to improve air safety at aerodromes.
NAMA Acting Director General, Mr. Lawrence Pwajok, who disclosed to New Telegraph in Lagos, listed airports to benefit from aviation security tools as Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano, Port-Harcourt International Airport and Katsina Airport.
The Instrument Landing System (ILS) is a radio navigation system that provides short-range guidance to aircraft to allow them to approach a runway at night or in bad weather.
In its original form, it allows an aircraft to approach until it is 200 feet (61 m) above the ground, within half a mile (800 m) of the runway .
At this point, the track should be visible to the pilot; if not, they perform a missed approach. Bringing the aircraft this close to the runway greatly improves the weather conditions in which a safe landing can be made. Later versions of the system, or “categories”, further reduced the minimum altitudes.
Pwajok said the move would bring the number of airports with Category 3 ILS in the country to five.
According to him, an instrument landing system is navigational equipment that provides lateral guidance for an aircraft, sky guidance for the aircraft, and longitudinal guidance for the aircraft when landing.
“The navigation facility is one of the most critical requirements for accessing an airport safely, efficiently and economically. We attach great importance to the purchase and installation of navigation equipment.
“Over the past five years, we have deployed a significant amount of navigation equipment. I can review some of them justifying my statement.
“Currently, we have installed what we call the Instrument Landing System (ILS) Category 3, in Lagos and Abuja. We also plan to install more in Kano, Port Harcourt and Katsina,” he said.
The NAMA boss, who explained that the Category 3 landing system was the highest category for landing facilities anywhere in the world, said the government was set to invest heavily to s ensure that all international airports in the country have them. Pwajok said the lighting system would complete Category 3.
He said a Category 3 approach system was needed to guide the pilot using the instrument landing system. “Currently we have installed a Category 2 Instrument Landing System which requires what we call low visibility operations. what we call a Category 2 Instrument Landing System
“For a Category 1 instrument landing system, which is few in number, you need visibility of 800 meters or more.
“That is, visibility needs to be around 1km (1000m) for you to do a Category 1 landing system, the lowest of the three categories.
“For Category 3, when the aircraft and flight crew are properly certified, with the visual lighting system available, you can essentially land in zero visibility,” he said.
He said Category 2 ILS have been installed at airports in Sokoto, Kano, Minna, Kaduna, Maiduguri, Yola, Jos, Enugu and Benin.
He said Category 2 ILS are currently being installed at Ilorin, Ibadan and Akure.
He said some state airports such as Gombe, Kebbi, Bayelsa and Anambra have already installed a Category 2 ILS.
The NAMA boss said Lafia airport, which also had a Category 2 ILS, had not been opened; had not yet been put into service.
Pwajok said Categroy1 was found at very few airports, adding that the government had plans to replace them with Category 2 ILS.
“We have other equipment that will get planes to the airport and we call it the Very High Frequency (VOR) Omnidirectional Range, an electronic ground system that provides information about high and low altitude routes and approaches. of the airport.
“VOR is like a broadcast station. It transmits information. Unlike radio stations where you tune in and listen to music. For this navigation facility, when you tune in, it gives you directional guidance.