Air traffic controllers at Denver International Airport (DEN) and Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (STL) are beginning to use Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) technology to track airport ground vehicles with the installation of a ground tracking system by ITT Exelis.
The airports said the technology adds a level of safety during irregular operations, such as construction, snow removal and fire fighting.
“At Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, we recognized the safety and operational benefits of equipping our key airfield support fleets, such as Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighter, operations, snow plows and maintenance vehicles,” said Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge, director at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport.
The airport ground tracking is enabled by the vehicle movement area transmitter (VMAT) on ground vehicles, allowing them to broadcast their position to controllers, similar to the ADS-B broadcast method used by aircraft.
Exelis has also made the technology transferrable to tablet and smart phone-based applications.
STL currently has 40 operational VMAT devices, and DEN will soon have 55 operational VMAT devices.