NATS’ first priority is the safety of aircraft in the airspace we are licensed to operate. Air Traffic Control (ATC) provides the vital services we need to keep the skies safe, using an extensive network of systems that provide radar coverage, navigation aids and voice & data communication to maintain safety.
We recognise the role that wind farms play in reducing the UK’s carbon emissions. However, the size of the turbines can cause problems for ATC infrastructure in a variety of ways. These include unwanted returns on primary surveillance radar, as well as degrading the performance of secondary surveillance radar, navigation aids and voice communication.
We are legally obliged to provide safeguarding services for the airports we are contracted to, as part of the wind farm planning process. But we don’t stop there. We also use our experience and knowledge to provide these same services to other airports on a commercial, rather than statutory, basis.
These safeguarding services can include feasibility and options studies, airspace changes, technical changes to assets, and training courses for wind farm developers.