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Jamaica benefiting from New Air Traffic Control Towers

New ATC Tower at Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay

New ATC Tower at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston

New Air Traffic Control (ATC) Towers have been launched at the Norman Manley and Sangster International Airport in Kingston and Montego Bay. AEROTEL’s technical team undertook the technical preparation and commissioning of the facility. The towers have been built at Jamaica’s two major international airports by the Jamaica Civil Aviation Authority, at a cost of J$2.5 billion. 

The towers are fitted with an industry-leading air traffic management system. This has positioned Jamaica as an enviable air traffic management environment, with the most advanced equipment available on the market to improve the safety of air operations nationally and globally. The system includes a new Voice Communications Control System, a Time Control System, an Automatic Terminal Information System, microwave, fibre-optic and copper infrastructure; a Meteorological System; a Fire Detection and Signalling System and an Airport Lighting system, with remote control functionalities. 

The Director General of the JCAA noted “As we carefully manage the risks and complexities of new systems and technologies, we continue to foster the adoption of advanced avionics and satellite-based procedures, performance-based navigation (PBN) and other fail-safe mechanisms, procedures, systems and structures, which make our industry safer, more resilient, incident-proof and efficient”

The new towers were built under the JCAA’s comprehensive modernisation programme to upgrade and replace major components of its communications, navigation and surveillance systems. The AEROTEL technical team underwent extensive training by lead contractors and air navigation suppliers INTELCAN out of Canada, to be ready for its role of supporting the implementation and operation of the towers. AEROTEL’s General Manager noted that “The advanced systems make use of the latest underlying ICT technologies including IP networking, fibre carrier, high capacity digital microwave, and LINUX-based operating system to provide a high degree of system performance and resilience. This is important to ensure that the systems remain fully available to support air traffic controllers in the critical function of safely managing the arrival and departure of flights into and out of Jamaica, and through our very busy airspace.”