Remote Airport Ramp Control Facilities -- Guidelines for U.S. Airports

Air navigation service providers (ANSPs) have begun to manage local air traffic operations from remote off-airport facilities. These “virtual towers” permit the control facility to be located anywhere that has secure electronic communication capability with the sensor networks installed at the airport. Although the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has oversight of airspace and movement areas, ramp control at busy airports is often the responsibility of the airport, an airline, or a third party. While there are several airports around the world employing remote facilities to manage traffic in the local airspace and movement areas, and research and testing are underway in the U.S., there has been less focus on the use of remote facilities to manage ramp activity. The objective of this research is to provide U.S. airport operators with an understanding of the potential roles remote ramp control facilities can play, their major components and supporting technologies, and the advantages and disadvantages of these virtual facilities relative to their traditional counterparts. Guidelines are also needed to help airports and stakeholders develop a use case for their facility and implement a virtual ramp tower.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $350000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 10-31

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Airport Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20591
  • Project Managers:

    Schatz, Theresia

  • Start Date: 20200225
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01731871
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 10-31
  • Files: TRB, RiP
  • Created Date: Feb 24 2020 3:41PM