Raytheon and Frequentis USA have partnered to build a lower-cost alternative to air traffic control towers operating at airports. It will work with its partner to develop the Remote Virtual Tower, which will cost between $2M and $3M, Raytheon said Wednesday. In comparison, a standard air traffic control tower may cost around $200M.
An RVT will allow its operator to instruct takeoffs, facilitate landings, manage ground traffic and perform other air traffic control functions from an office even miles away from the airfield. A system of mast-mounted cameras will provide operators with up to 360 degrees of situational awareness depending on need.
Chris Rogers, RVT program manager at Raytheon, said the company may scale and adapt the modular system to address specific and unique needs at each airport. Raytheon intends to install the first RVT unit at an airport next year.