At the bottom of the flight punctuality table for months, the Mumbai airport could benefit from a new air navigation system, trials of which have begun.
Testing of the technique, Airport Collaborative Decision Making (ACDM), last week showed that departure delays at the city airport could be nearly halved when the system goes live. The system is based on a globally successful concept.
More than two years after the city air traffic control (ATC) decided to develop a homegrown version of the concept, trial results for the first time showed its effective implementation could make the land-locked airport congestion-free. “We managed to cut down congestion on the ground from 26 minutes per hour to 15 minutes even during peak hours,” said Jayant Dasgupta, general manager, Mumbai ATC.
The system, Dasgupta said, would go live after the monsoon.
ACDM comprises feeding data such as flight plans, the runway in use and parking bays to be allotted to a particular incoming plane into a software. The system then uses algorithms to throw up real-time timelines to all departments involved in air traffic management. The automation will help save the time wasted in verbal communication between these departments, said airport officials.
Sources in the Mumbai airport operator’s office and private airlines operating out of the city airport said that they had witnessed the difference in schedules seen during the trials.
“We are eagerly waiting for the concept to go live,” said an official from a private airline requesting anonymity.
The Airports Authority of India (AAI) will soon issue an Aeronautical Information Publication (AIP), a formal document, to announce its implementation, said officials.