Can AI-Controlled Cameras Replace An Air Traffic Control Tower?
Saturday January 26, 2019. 10:34 PM , from Slashdot
London's Heathrow airport is testing a surprising new system involving high-definition cameras, monitoring 50,000 arrivals in the month of March. Bloomberg reports:
Views from the cameras will be fed into an artificial intelligence platform from Canada's Searidge Technologies Inc. that will interpret the images and reveal to controllers when a particular aircraft has cleared the runway, allowing them to clear the next flight to come in to land... If successful, the system will initially be deployed when Heathrow's 285-foot control tower is shrouded in cloud -- a situation that currently compels the airport to rely on radar readings to determine the position of jets. That in turn requires a bigger gap between flights, costing the hub nine landings an hour or 20 percent of the usual total...
The same technology could also control the airport's $22 billion third runway due to open for flights by 2025, removing the need to construct a new control tower to oversee the strip north and west of the existing one. The smaller London City airport is removing its tower altogether and deploying a mast with zoom cameras, allowing flights to be managed from the Swanwick control center more than 80 miles away.
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