The acronym LASAW stands for “Landing Approach Surveillance And Warning”. A combined hardware-software solution, the system uses a small on-the-ground receiver to identify all aircraft within a maximum 260nm range. LASAW uses custom-designed AI software to detect aircraft entering approach corridors and all other non-specific approach paths to help provide the earliest possible alert for an imminent landing. Providing valuable time to ensure decks are clear of equipment and personnel, ensuring standby Firefighting equipment is ready and armed in case of emergencies. Landing sites at Offshore platforms are particularly vulnerable to Wrong Deck landings and are particularly suited to LASAW t provide a safer landing zone environment.
Observing and modelling aircraft behaviour in real time to proactively predict landing intentions
In the airspace around a landing zone or helipad, the situation is always changing and developing. How can a system provide warnings about events that emerge dynamically in a changing environment? Answer: Through a thorough understanding of the overall airspace and the known and variable factors within it. From this, you can build an AI model of the outcomes when the variables shift. This, in essence, is what LASAW does for monitoring and predicting air traffic around a specific aerodrome.
For example, LASAW’s intelligent incursion monitoring is custom-designed for each site. It considers aircraft’s general direction of approach and random approaches based on speed, altitude, rate of descent, direction, and other nearby landing sites and no-fly zones to ensure precise and reliable alerting.
Through it all, the issues of false alerts are addressed by ensuring aircraft meet highly specific approach configuration criteria before LASAW initiates an alert. This ability to configure and adjust the parameters that LASAW uses to make predictions means it can operate successfully where there are other landing sites within the usual alert threshold of 1NM. All approach configurations are customisable and able to be fine-tuned for maximum alert timeframes.
Proactive detection backed by customised automated alerts and escalation protocols, everything from discrete text messages to firefighting system deployment
Helicopters touch down on helipads unexpectedly or in error far more often than the industry likes to admit. And the “near misses”, where helicopters approach the wrong deck but divert at the last moment, are even more common and dangerous. Addressing this industry open secret is one of the original purposes triggering the development of the LASAW concept.
There are three thresholds of escalation:
Following flights from their take-off point – even if it’s far outside LASAW range – then integrating them into the approach system when they’re close enough to be detected
Beyond the immediate proximity of your landing zone, LASAW gives a live view of all air traffic within a radius of up to 260NM (depending on terrain). This capability means users receive live second-by-second updates on the ETAs of all expected flights even though they might still be an hour or more away.
LASAW automatically integrates IFR flight plans for all air traffic as submitted by ICAO/IATA landing sites to air traffic service providers. Flight paths are predicted based on departure details and known performance criteria. A position indicator of each aircraft is shown, estimating where they will be if they maintain their current flight behaviour along the planned flight route. The accuracy of this prediction can be anywhere between 5-20 minutes.
This accuracy prior to entering the LASAW surveillance area is usually set according to either or both of:
Surveillance and alerting for all landing zones protecting ground people, aircraft and assets
Keeping your equipment, people and landing zones safe.