As many as 23 operational airports in the country do not have night landing facilities. The list of airports not having night landing facility also include Kushinagar International Airport in Uttar Pradesh which was inaugurated in October 2021 giving a major boost to the Buddhist tourism circuit.
Others in the list are Salem in Tamil Nadu; Shimla, Kullu and Dharamshala in Himachal Pradesh; Kalaburagi in Karnataka, and others. Authorities do not permit the aircraft to land at night at an airport that does not have a night landing facility.
|STATE||NAME OF THE AIRPORT|
|Andhra Pradesh||Cudappah, Kurnool|
|Arunachal Pradesh||Tezu, Passighat|
|Daman & Diu||Diu|
|Himachal Pradesh||Dharamshala, Kulu and Shimla|
India has over 100 operational airports and officials said that the airports not having night landing facilities are mostly those witnessing lower passenger traffic.
Airports Authority of India, which manages most of the airports in India, takes up a particular one for consideration for providing night landing facilities when airlines show interest during night operations.
Airlines have to apply with the Airports Authority of India to facilitate night landing facility in a particular airport and then the process of offering the convenience starts.
The upgradation of airports, including the provision of night landing facility is a continuous process, which depends upon operational requirements, commercial feasibility, etc, and varies from airport to airport in the country, said the ministry of civil aviation in a recent Parliament reply.
The main requirement for night landing is that the runway approach lighting system which includes a series of light bars with strobe lights installed at the end of the runway.
Instrument Landing System (ILS)
The runway approach lighting system includes a series of light bars with strobe lights located at the end of the runway, which is the most essential requirement for night landing.
A runway with an Instrument Landing System (ILS) is served by such a system. If pilots cannot establish visual contact with the runway, ILS uses a variety of navigational aids to assist them in landing the plane.
Lighting along the runway edge is also vital for airport managers so that pilots landing at night can make visual contact and align their aircraft with the runway centre.
It is also important for airport operators to have lighting along the runway edge so that pilots landing at night can make visual contact and align the aircraft with the centre of the runway.
However, simply putting the technology in airports is insufficient. Airlines must also employ qualified pilots to make instrument-based landings and use aircraft that are compliant with the latest technologies. Most large airlines that often fly out of airports with low visibility do have the appropriate aircraft. However, they usually only train pilots who will be flying to these airports regularly.