Scoping Study Options

Helios Report:

The report produce a number of options.   A summary of the pros and cons for each option is included below.

Controlled Airspace (CAS) & Continued Procedural Service (APP) i.e. no Surveillance

For:

• Easiest and Least Risky Option
• Likely to be supported by Staff
• Will comply with Regulation
• Improved Safety but may not be enough for some airlines.

Against:

• Fails to address almost all of the Key Drivers including safety.
• Doesn’t solve the Recruitment and Retention issues
• Doesn’t address reliance on APP or limited availability of APP training
• Doesn’t address deferred capital costs for key infrastructure projects
• Service remains inflexible and environmentally inefficient.

This option was discounted as it didn’t address our key drivers – to improve safety and efficiency and deliver sustainable air traffic services into the future.

Whilst controlled airspace would mitigate some safety issues, it does not in itself provide a surveillance solution required to replace reliance on the current Procedural Service, which is becoming increasingly outdated.

Recruitment and retention difficulties, ageing infrastructure and resultant lack of resilience and inflexibility of service provision would remain an issue.

Controlled Airspace (CAS) & Local Surveillance Service (APS)

For:

• Improves Safety and reduces the risk of airborne conflict
• Environmental Benefits (more direct routes)
• Positive impact on staff as they would not have to relocate
• Address threat of limited availability of APP training

Against:

• Fails to fully address all of the key Drivers
• Exacerbates the challenge of recruitment and retention as it would require significant additional resource to provide the on-site APS.
• Involves substantial costs for additional infrastructure and resource.
• Doesn’t provide the required level of resilience, flexibility or sustainability.
• Doesn’t address deferred capital costs for key infrastructure projects

This option would allow us to mitigate the safety risk associated with air traffic service provision in uncontrolled airspace without surveillance. However, it was not pursued as the current challenge of recruitment and retention of air traffic controllers would be intensified due to the increased number of dedicated staff required to provide both an aerodrome and approach radar service at each airport.

This option would require a significant investment in new infrastructure and radar systems at most of the airports within scope.

Despite a significant investment in infrastructure and an increase in resource, this option would still fail to deliver on a number of key drivers including improvements in resilience, flexibility and sustainability and an answer to the challenge of air traffic controller recruitment and retention, particularly at our island airports.

Therefore, this option was discounted as a viable option for delivering sustainable air traffic services to the communities we serve.

Controlled Airspace (CAS) & Centralised Surveillance (APS)

For:

• Improvements in safety and reduces the risk of airborne conflict
• Environmental Benefits (more direct routes)
• Address threat of limited availability of APP training

Against:

• Fails to fully address all of the key Drivers
• Exacerbates the challenge of recruitment and retention i.e. staff required at both the airports and the centralised APS facility.
• Doesn’t provide the required level of resilience, flexibility or sustainability.
• Most Costly Option

This option would allow us to mitigate the safety risk associated with air traffic service provision in uncontrolled airspace without surveillance. However, it would require air traffic controllers at two separate locations i.e. at the airports to provide an aerodrome control service and also at a new centralised facility to provide the new approach radar service, effectively doubling the number of controllers that we have today.

Despite a significant investment in infrastructure and an increase in resource, this option would still fail to deliver on a number of key drivers including improvements in resilience, flexibility and sustainability and an answer to the challenge of air traffic controller recruitment and retention, particularly at our island airports.
Therefore, this option was discounted as a viable option for delivering sustainable air traffic services to the communities we serve.

Chosen Option – Controlled Airspace (CAS), Centralised Surveillance (APS) and Remote Towers

For:

• Significant improvements in safety and reduced risk of airborne conflict
• The only option that offers a long-term solution to the recruitment and retention challenge.
• The only option that offers a long-term increase in resilience, flexibility and sustainability
• Only option to address risk exposure for out-of-hours operations.
• An initial cost but significant savings in the longer term

Against:

• The most complex and challenging option.
• Requires significant internal resources to implement the programme.
• Impact on staff who will have to relocate.

The chosen option, whilst the most complex and challenging, is the only option that offers long-term solutions in terms of resilience and flexibility, both during normal and out-of-hours operations.

It also provides a long-term solution to the issue of recruitment and retention of air traffic staff. The combination of controlled airspace, centralised surveillance and the technology employed in remote towers will significantly modernise HIAL’s air traffic management and most importantly, improve safety.

This option will allow HIAL to deliver sustainable aviation services well into the future and the costs associated with the introduction of the ATMS programme will be recovered by significant savings in the long term.

Our existing air traffic control teams are key to our future service and we will do everything in our power to mitigate the impact of the programme on our staff, whether they choose to relocate or not.