EGNOS 'should be fully operational by 2019'
The Isles of Scilly Steamship Group has given an update on the status of EGNOS at Land's End Airport following a discussion at July 10th's Full Council meeting.
Some Councillors queried the readiness of the satellite landing technology, with Lead Member for Place Cllr Steve Sims revealing that Land's End will need to "reapply for dispensation for the GNSS system approach training".
A spokesman for the Isles of Scilly Steamship Group has now told This is Scilly: “EGNOS is a satellite service which augments the existing Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) navigation system and allows aircraft to determine their position to within 1.5 metres, so we expect it to have a significant impact on reducing the number of no-fly days.
"All Skybus and Island Helicopters aircraft have been fitted with touch-screen GPS navigation receivers following an investment of £260,000 and we are in the course of training our 27 pilots.
"There is no such thing as a ‘digital landing aid’ but if Cllr Dorrien-Smith is referring to instrument approach then our new system is fully operational on runway 07 at Land’s End Airport, and trials have been completed on the remaining three runways. There are also instrument approaches at St Mary’s but this is old technology, which is why the Council is seeking CAA approval for satellite-based approach."
The spokesman added: "Eighty percent of our pilots have already had ground school training and our two senior flight examiners have been approved by the CAA to train and examine our pilots in Performance Based Navigation operations. Flight training will begin in earnest after the peak season and we expect the system to be fully operational in 2019.”