Fly Through: How GIS Helps in Fly-throughs

Over the past few years, we have seen a large number of GIS-based software apps that play a pivotal role in making the aviation industry safer and more robust than ever before. These tools can help you with just about any flight navigation task, from calculating an appropriate height for the building near the airport to navigating the routes to the target destination and managing air traffic.

Geospatial technology has come a long way in helping the aviation industry grow. Flying an aircraft at a high altitude is a bit difficult and dangerous even for the most experienced pilots and airport crew. The sudden updrafts and downdrafts present a set of risks by putting unnecessary force on the wings of the aircraft. This has been the reason why major airports are turning to the GIS (geographic information system) to get a clear and better view of the route. Not only does it streamline the navigation process, but it gives a 3D view of the high altitudes. This makes it easier for the pilots and co-pilots to navigate the way seamlessly.

Landserf for Digital Elevation Models

One such tool that has been gaining a lot of popularity in the aviation world is Landserf. It is a free geospatial tool used for processing and visualizing geospatial data. The tool is compatible with Windows, Linux, and macOS. It was primarily launched for analyzing and processing digital elevation models. Even though it is not an open-source tool, it features a documented API designed specifically to enable Java programmers to customize and make the software app better and more flexible.

One of the many applications of Landserf is interactive 3D viewing functionality that provides airport crew with a clear picture of the buildings, air traffic, and the elevation models that might act as obstacles. GIS plays a very important role in the aviation industry. It is used for monitoring tall buildings to give people detailed insights into the height of the buildings to make navigation easier for the crew.

GIS Uses in the Aviation Industry

In addition to navigation, GIS tools are widely used for the layout. During the airport design period, the engineers used 3D layouts of the structure to create a perfect structure that supports uninterrupted transportation. Not only is it used during the construction of the airport, but the technology is used for running daily airport operations.

GIS is not new in the aviation industry. In fact, this technology has long been used for path monitoring. It allows digital mapping of the routes. The most important use of the GIS in aviation is tracking the last active location of the emergency response. In case an emergency arises, these mapping tools can be used to track the current as well as the previously active location of the aircraft. The technology has also proven quite helpful in conducting investigations of flight tragedies. It is used to identify the causes of flight tragedies. Other than these, GIS is used for airport lighting control, environmental & weather assessment, capacity planning, and parking management.