BER installs new system to protect against bird strikes

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

A new radar system to protect against bird strikes on aircraft was installed at Berlin Brandenburg Willy Brandt Airport. The technology is being used for the first time at a German airport.  

The new system replaces a previous one from the company from 2016, which only monitored the southern runway. The phased array radar antenna enables 3/XNUMX full XNUMXD detection of bird movements within a radius of ten kilometers and thus monitors the entire airport area. With the help of special software, the size, height and flight direction of flocks of birds are determined and displayed. In this way, possible collisions between birds and aircraft that are taking off or landing can be calculated in advance and averted in a targeted manner.  

At BER, pyrotechnics are used, among other things, which are fired when swarms appear and produce a loud bang. Furthermore, a hunting dog and, at times, a falconer with birds of prey are used to deter birds. Also, a special planting and development of the airport area leaves little opportunity for birds to breed, according to the airport in a press release. If birds get into the engines of an aircraft, this can lead to engine damage and thus to a dangerous situation. So far there has been no risk of bird strikes on the approximately 1.500 hectare site of BER. For this reason, there have not been any life-threatening accidents in German air traffic. Nevertheless, all airports and airlines make great efforts to avoid bird strikes. 

"We are making great efforts to offer our customers at BER the highest possible level of security. To do this, we also rely on the use of the latest technologies, whether in the terminals or on the aprons. With MAX, we can now detect flocks of birds more precisely, scare birds away in a more targeted manner and thus prevent bird strikes more effectively," says Thomas Hoff Andersson, Managing Director Operations at Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH.

Photo: Günther Wicker/Berlin Brandenburg Airport.
Photo: Günther Wicker/Berlin Brandenburg Airport.