NATS to provide pilot training for Bristol Airport

NATS to provide pilot training for Bristol Airport

Air traffic services provider NATS is to provide fully-managed simulator services at Bristol Airport.

The 3D Aerodrome and Approach simulator, which will operate remotely, will provide the best available equipment for Bristol air traffic staff to train, familiarise and demonstrate their expertise, as well as practising new procedures and techniques.

The service will be live for December 2014.

Pseudo pilots, who interact with controllers by playing the role of pilots during the training and simulation, will be based at NATS’ Training Centre in Hampshire, providing their services remotely. 

The airport-based controllers will interact with the simulator without leaving the tower at Bristol. 

This service means that support staff to assist activities locally is not needed. It is also far more cost effective.

Martin Donnan, general manager Bristol Airport, said: “Although we deliver the air traffic control function at the tower and engineering services, the simulator equipment owner is Bristol Airport.

“I am delighted that the airport has decided to procure the NATS Ace system, and we are looking forward to the delivery of the project.”

Three-dimensional airfield and aircraft models along with various simulated air traffic scenarios will be provided as part of a data service through the contract, and with the ability to add in more at short notice if needed.

This is the latest remote facility set up by NATS, which provides remote control for various training and simulation sites/locations.

It follows the installation of the remote simulator at TAG Farnborough Airport, which has been live since February 2013.

This illustrates the evolution of the business as it moves away from the more traditional simulator training offerings and unlocks the potential for future commercial opportunities at airports through the UK and internationally.