Here’s a captivating illustration of the immense complexity of the job facing air traffic controllers as they marshal our skies
Ever wondered about the task facing our air traffic controllers in our ever busier skies?
Here’s a captivating illustration of the immense complexity of their day-to-day job marshalling our airspace, put together by NATS (formerly known as National Air Traffic Services).
The timelapse data visualisation, which was created using actual flight records from a typical summer flying schedule in Europe, shows just how full our skies can become.
Using British radar information from June 21, and European flight plan information from July 28, the video demonstrates flights clustering around Heathrow, even showing the loops made by aircraft as they wait for a landing slot.
On a typical summer day, more than 30,000 flights travel through European airspace; more than a quarter of them enter British-controlled airspace, which includes Heathrow, the world’s busiest airport and Gatwick, the world’s busiest single runway airport.
A NATS spokesman said: “Airspace might be the invisible infrastructure, but it is every bit as important as the road, rail and utility networks we all rely on every day.
“We hope you enjoy it [the video] and that it acts as a small reminder of the incredible work air traffic controllers, working with pilots and ground crew, do every single day.”
For more information, see the NATS blog
RAF jet buzzes planespotters in Lincolnshire