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Tallest in India, new ATC tower to boost Mumbai air traffic

New taxiways, radar integration to reduce delays and handle flights efficiently

BS Reporter  |  Mumbai 

Union Minister Ajit Singh and Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan on Friday inaugurated Mumbai airport's new control (ATC) tower.

Built at the cost of Rs 100 crore, the 83.8 metres Mumbai tower is the highest in India. “It will help improve visual at the airport and improve safety. The new tower will be fully functional by mid December,” said Jayant Dasgupta, general manager, Mumbai ATC.

A series of upgrades including construction of new rapid exit and integration of radar network will help controllers to handle more flights and reduce delays.

has two intersecting runways which limits runway movements. The main runway has a capacity of 40-42 movements and can handle upto 46 movements a hour. The secondary runway has a capacity to handle 30-32 flights a hour. Simulatenous operations are not carried out. (ON A HIGH)

The Mumbai International Airport Limited and the Airports Authority of India plan to increase the movements to 48 per hour.

As a part of the plan to increase the movements to 48 per hour, two are being constructed, which would reduce the runway occupancy time. Typically, a plane takes 45 seconds to vacate the runway upon touchdown and even a few seconds reduction can have a cascading effect and help increase movement.

The existing and area control building will be demolished to construct a parallel taxiway for secondary runway.

By next year, the Airports Authority of India will integrate radars at Mumbai with other airports in the western region. While the radar network in south and central India have been integrated two years ago, Mumbai radars are yet to be integrated with those in Bhopal, Ahmedabad, Porbandar, Bellary and Nagpur. Mumbai ATC handles over 950 overflying flights daily.

Typically, the ATC secondary radars have a range of 250 nautical miles, but there are certain blind spots where there is no coverage. An integrated network helps in reducing separation between two planes on the same altitude and reducing delays. The other advantage is that controllers can monitor outside their air space if there is a radar failure in one of the cities.


* Tallest ATC tower in India. 83.8 m tall equal to 30 storey building

* 5 mile clear visibility for controllers

* Reinforced sandwich glass can withstand powerful winds

* Will enhance airport performance, capacity, efficiency and safety

First Published: Sat, October 19 2013. 00:36 IST