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Saab’s Digital Tower Achieves Significant Approval from UK Military Regulator

Saab has been successfully accredited under the Air Traffic Management (ATM) Equipment Approved Organisation Scheme (AAOS) by the UK Military Aviation Authority and is approved to develop, provide, install and maintain ATM equipment for customers in the UK Ministry of Defence under Regulatory Article 1027. This is an important step required to be able to deliver ATM equipment to the UK Armed Forces.

The AAOS approval was achieved following a year-long effort of working alongside the UK’s Military Aviation Authority (MAA). It is noteworthy as being the first AAOS ever issued for a delivery organisation for military Digital Tower ATM equipment, a unique achievement for Saab.

“This is an important step for us to support the UK MOD with the expansion of digital towers and we are proud to have the only accredited solution that complies with their regulations,” says Per Ahl, CEO of Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions.

The MAA, established in April 2010, is one of the world’s premier defence aviation safety bodies, recognised globally for its high standards and risk-based safety focus. This approval further strengthens Saab’s UK credentials, building on the Civil Aviation Authority’s approval gained in 2018.

Other Saab Digital Air Traffic Solution approvals include certification to provide Air Traffic Services and MET-observation services according to EU-regulation (EU) 2017/373, providing digital ATC as a service at four Swedish airports. Saab Digital Air Traffic Solutions also holds ISO certifications 9001, 14001 and 27001.

Conceptually, Saab’s Digital Tower is comprised of two major parts: On-Airport Equipment and a Control Facility.

The On-Airport Equipment can be located at the local airport or at multiple remote airports. Its configuration varies as a function of the specific Digital Tower use case. It can include panoramic or IR or PTZ cameras providing coverage of the area of interest, as well as signal light guns and sound sensors to help capture the airport sound when needed. An environmentally protected camera house can be provided, as well as a shelter to house equipment that must be co-located with the cameras.

The Control Facility has a great degree of variability, depending on the specific use case. In the most common case, a Digital Tower Centre (DTC), consisting of a number of Digital Tower Modules (DTMs), controls one or more airports, some simultaneously. The key component is the Visual Presentation (VP), which can show full 360° views or distributed views. A number of features further enhance the user’s situational awareness, such as video and PTZ tracking, graphic overlays, and radar labels.

The Saab Digital Tower can integrate a complete suite of Saab automation tools, such as a ground/air traffic display or electronic flight strips, supporting the provision of full tower and approach services, including full A-SMGCS capabilities for larger airports. Saab’s ability to provide full turnkey Digital Tower solutions reduces implementation risks and overall life-cycle costs. In the case of ramp or apron towers, the Saab Digital Tower can be integrated with Saab’s Aerobahn CDM Suite to provide a complete set of apron management tools.

Tactical Voice Communication System (VCS) is integrated with the Digital Tower solution to provide air traffic controllers with a robust and user-friendly communication interface. The integrated communication solution is built on the same successful core technology as other TactiCall solutions, currently in active service with military customers and within several civil domains globally.



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