airports (28)

10843821096?profile=RESIZE_930xTiia Monto

You’ve all no doubt noticed that building, at or near the airport, which  resembles a lighthouse. In fact, air-traffic-control towers are lighthouses of a sort, albeit much more sophisticated and with many more functions. But what's inside an air traffic-control tower? Does is have more than one floor inside? Why is it so tall? Are they all the same? Here's a post to clarify a few things about one of the most complex buildings at any airport.

The Function of an Airport Control Tower

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Airline flights in much of the world are organised through a system called "hub-and-spoke," invented by U.S. airline Delta in 1955; made widespread in the USA after that country's deregulation of the airline industry in 1978; and commonplace in Europe as well since the European Union finally eliminated the last of its own air-industry restrictions in 1997. The model is named after the basic design of a traditional wheel, where the "hub" is a central airport and the spokes are the flights comin

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In today’s commercial passenger aviation, understandably it’s the aircraft that get top billing and most of the attention. But the airport systems that make their operation possible include a complex array of equipment, much of which is unglamorous and goes largely unnoticed by the flying public. And one of the key contraptions along these lines is a low-slung vehicle called a pushback tug or tractor.

As the name implies, this doughty workhorse of the tarmac goes into action when it’s time to

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A new study shows that San Diego International Airport is the most unsecure airport in the U.S. when it comes to cybersecurity, while Chicago-Midway is the one where travelers can feel the safest about their digital lives.

According to the survey, which was conducted by Coronet, a cloud security company based in Israel, Wi-Fi security at U.S. airports is often sacrificed for consumer convenience, leaving networks unencrypted, unsecured or improperly configured.

“It’s quite usual to pass the time w

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9 Foods to Avoid When Flying

In this day and age, for every person who takes care about what he or she eats, it seems many more are still fairly careless about it. But even those who watch what they eat may not realize that conditions while flying in a commercial jetliner – especially longhaul – can present issues when it comes to certain foods. And so, there are some you really might want to avoid in order to make your flight as comfortable as possible. Some of these may seem like no-brainers, so consider this simply a re

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by José Miguel Rodriguez

Most of the time we find ourselves passing through expansive airports with amenities and services galore, and nice, wide, long runways. And then, of course, there are the other airports. The ones that make for great cocktail-party tales of harrowing landings amid spectacular settings. Today we take you on a quick tour of some of the most dangerous airports in the world: 

Courchevel, France

Located at the renowned French Alps ski resort of the same name, Courchevel po

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Airport Marshallers: Traffic Cops of the Tarmac


Today we hit the tarmac to learn more about the important role played by the ladies and gents you see outside your aircraft window gesticulating up a storm. They’re called marshallers(known as señaleros in Spanish), and besides guiding planes whilst they’re on the ground, these individuals perform other less well known functions as well, such as cooperating with other airport authorities to monitor various vital technical procedures, and providing assistance in case of an unusual incident of an

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Landing Jetliners in Crosswinds

by José Miguel Rodriguez

Not long ago, this video went viral on YouTube, racking up more than 10 million views. Apart from the fact that the 1,200-millimetre telephoto lens thoroughly flattens both the foreground and background, making the airplanes seem suspended in midair, what on earth are these pilots up to? Specifically, what’s up with the bizarre landing technique

Believe it or not this technique is standard, by-the-book practice when there are strong lateral winds present during landing

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by José Miguel Rodríguez

You think your job is stressful? Imagine, for just a moment, being an air traffic controller. Have trouble imagining? We invite you to read this quick overview through to the end and then tell us: Could this be a job for you

Admittedly, air traffic control is not for the faint of heart. Though very much behind the scenes and (as it were) under the radar, this work has different aspects depending on the individual unit where it’s carried out. In a given tower there will be

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Airline Maintenance Secrets Revealed


by Javier Pedreira

air travel is the safest form of transportation going is not mere happenstance but rather due to rigourous maintenance of equipment and exhaustive training of personnel.

Although in 2010 Iberia added a major maintenance hangar at Barcelona airport, since the 1970s the primary maintenance facilities have been headquartered adjacent to Barajas Airport in a suburban Madrid industrial zone called La Muñoza. This 220,000-square metre (54-acre) is where aircraft engines constantl

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Narita International Airport, also known as Tokyo Narita Airport, is the most popular gateway to Japan,


but in reality, it is not in Tokyo at all. It is a 60-minute express train ride (80-90 minute bus ride) outside of Tokyo


in Chiba Prefecture. Adjacent to the airport is Narita City, with a population of almost 129,000. This may be a pittance compared to Tokyo's 12 million, but there is much to do and see culturally in both Narita City


and its next-door neighbor Sakura City – population nearly 172

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Flight delays are frustrating and time consuming. They send stranded passengers on a mad cycle of phone calls, emails, texts, Facebook messages, overpriced bottled water, lots of Starbucks and Auntie Annie's salty pretzels.

But there is also something beautiful that comes out of a flight delay – people bond and form friendships – almost cult like – they unite, commiserate and share deep thoughts about the weather.
Before you know it you are telling all sorts of “Gate Strangers” where you are from
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Flying with a wheelchair is a lot like playing the tables at Vegas. You throw the dice and hope for the best. Sometimes, it really does feel like a craps shoot.


Although U.S. airlines are generally required to accommodate you, it would not be in your best interest to just show up at the airport and put that to the test. Flying and airports are strenuous at best, throw in an unexpected accommodation request and you’re just asking for trouble.

There are recourses available to you when things go wron

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Frequent Flyers Should Not Board First

This year, United dropped its practice of allowing families to board planes before other travelers. The legacy carrier joined the ranks of American and US Airways, which don't officially offer pre-boarding or early boarding of any kind for families. But a handful of other airlines still do, including Delta (the last legacy airline supporting family-friendly boarding), JetBlue, and Southwest.

The industry's approach to boarding is mixed, as is, ostensibly, popular opinion.  In a recent poll of mor

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Iberia launches "IBHelp", revolutionising customer service via mobile devices

  • Original and innovative new in-house technology connects more than 100 iPads and PDAs to check-in kiosks, the new Quick Service Points and other devices that can issue the documents customers may need
  • IBHelp enables Iberia staff to deal with any incident or customer request at any point from check-in to boarding, making connections, retrieving luggage, etc.
  • The initiative is part of Iberia’s Ágora scheme to make its T4 hu
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From From Kaleel

Guns ‘n Airports: What is Georgia Thinking?

Last month Georgia lawmakers decided it would allow guns to be carried in those parts of the the state’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, not expressly controlled by the Federal government.
The airport is one of the worlds busiest.

While Georgia Governor Sonny Perdu has not yet signed the bill into law, the legislation allows the carrying of firearms in the airport lobby, ticket counter and baggage claim areas, places not under s
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Who doesn’t love an airline lounge when you have time on your hands and you need space from the swarms of people flocking around those tiny connected chairs in an airless waiting area of a gate?

Corporate road warriors - Let us Unite and pay tribute to the holy "lounge."

Those relaxing open spaces with giant TVs, cocktails (virgin and otherwise) and that great “hotel lobby” smell.

Sidebar - reading - optional - Hotel Lobby Smell Defined: You know when you stay in a really nice hotel and you wa

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That's right! We've heard it all and we're all sick of the Nude-o-scope body scanners. However yesterday a passenger decided to reveal the FULL Monty for the TSA and surprisingly, since it wasn't a overly revealing computer image, the TSA didn't approve and instead the gentleman was arrested.

The TSA demands either a nude computer image to be taken of every traveler or if you opt out, you're subjected to the standard metal detector and a full body rub down which includes a nice caressing of the g

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Top 5 Airports to Get Stranded In

The thought of a flight delay can fill any roving traveller with dread, but fear not, after much travelling we have found the best airports to get stranded in:

1. Geneva Airport, Switzerland

You have just returned a car hire in Geneva airport and you’re ready to check in for your return flight home when disaster strikes, they tell you your flight has been delayed for 4 hours! You should take this as a perfect opportunity to head for the airport shops and treat yourself, or buy those last minute

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Avoid Heathrow Airport If You Can

In celebration of national Day here in the UAE we had a short holiday, so we decided to take a quick jaunt to London. I had never been there, and I am a history fanatic, where better than London! 

I always fly Qatar Airways. Qatar flies into Heathrow. I did nor know anything about this airport, or i would have taken a different carrier and avoided this miserable excuse for an international airport.

We arrived at Heathrow airport about noon. TWO HOURS later we were finally through immigration. Term

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