Capital Airport BBI: Milestone reached: south runway completed10.05.2011
Dr. Manfred A. Körtgen, Managing Director of Operations/BBI at Berlin Airports: “The new south runway is one of the core infrastructure elements at BBI: 60 metres wide, 4000 metres long – anything with wings can take off and land here. The entire system represents the latest, most advanced technology. The total area of the newly built aircraft operation areas, which includes the runways, taxiways and aprons, is almost 1.7 million square metres. Over 1.1 million cubic metres of concrete have been laid.”
The new BBI airport will have two parallel runways, which are 1,900 metres apart and can be operated independently. The entire airport infrastructure is located between these two runways, from the terminal, the power stations, fire services, car parks, hotel and office buildings right through to all road and rail infrastructure. Streaming the majority of traffic through the centre of the site allows most of the ground noise to be contained within the airport perimeter.
Vast dimensions Excavation and ground preparing work for the runways and the taxiways started in spring 2008; the concreting work for the taxiways was completed in late summer 2008 and all the concrete had been laid for the new south runway one year later. The total area of the newly built aircraft operating areas (runways, taxiways and aprons) is almost 1.7 million square metres, and more than 1.1 cubic metres of concrete were used.
The new runway has a total length of 4000 metres and it is 60 metres wide; the runway consists of four different layers with a total thickness of 1.3 metres.
Runway lights and signposts To supply power for the lights and house the lighting control systems for the two runways at the BBI, three new lighting systems were installed and an existing system was upgraded. Power is supplied to the systems on the aircraft operating areas through independent power supply networks with full back-up systems, which ensure an uninterrupted supply of power to the systems at all times.
To power the lighting system for the new south runway, the apron and the taxiway systems, a total of 1,125 kilometres of special airport cable have been laid in a duct system underneath the concrete surfaces. The duct system allows the cables to be replaced and upgraded with ease in the future if the runway is extended or if technical adaptations are required. 5,450 inset lights and 1,425 elevated lights with all the necessary remote control modules for individual lights and circuit transformers have been installed in the new areas. The 1,000 centreline lights and 350 stop bar lights are equipped with the most advanced LED technology and individual light controls. This system allows faulty lights to be identified precisely on the computer and repaired immediately. Compared with conventional halogen runway lights the new LED technology provides a brighter light, it consumes less power, requires much less maintenance and the lamps have an exceptionally long lifespan. 485 signposts have been put in place to help the pilots navigate securely to the nearest taxiway and their final position.
Apron lighting system To provide optimum lighting conditions on the apron and the piers, 63 lighting masts – each 30 metres high – with adjustable floodlights have been installed. Each mast is fitted with between four and six lights, each of which holds two 400 watt lamps. The illuminance level is five times that of a conventional municipal lighting system.
Fence and apron surveillance To secure the safety of the new BBI at all times the security fence has been fully fitted with the latest video monitoring technology plus motion sensors. Fifty video cameras and 22 kilometres of sensor cables have been installed. The apron at BBI and all taxi traffic is monitored by 212 video cameras.
Aircraft positioning systems The aircraft parking systems at the jetways all have new docking systems which replace the familiar Wingman systems. These new systems automatically scan the aircraft and recognise its position and the type of aircraft. The system analyses the data and gives the pilot optimal support during parking.
Early warning system for ice The new south runway is equipped with an early warning system for ice, which analyses the condition of the runway surfaces and feeds forecasts to the Federal Air Traffic Control and the Federal Weather Service. Current data, such as the freezing point, temperature and wind direction, are automatically sent to the airport’s decision-makers. Special dedicated server systems save the data for subsequent evaluations.