‘Fly + Guard’ responsible for safety in sky – Incheon Airport Air Navigational Aids

“7.3 people and 0.07 people”

What does this figure mean?

Statistics show that unlike car accidents, which kill 7.3 people per 1.6 billion kilometers, the number of deaths from airplane accidents is only 0.07. Isn’t that amazing? Based on these figures, airplanes are the safest means of transport.

However, an aircraft accident has a spine-chilling twist. Due to the aircraft’s characteristics, it is often a major accident in which all pilots and passengers die in the event of an accident. Even though the accident rate is low, the damage caused by one accident is enormous.

One of the biggest casualties caused by aircraft accident is the Tenerife crash. On March 27, 1977, at Los Rodeos Airport on the Spanish Canary Islands, two aircraft collided on the runway due to poor cooperation between flight crewmembers and controllers. The accident killed all 248 K-Air passengers, and killed 335 out of 396 P-air passengers, the worst major accident on the airline, killing total 583 of the 637 passengers on board.

Did you happen to know? There is an ‘Evil 11 Minutes’ in the airline industry.

It’s three minutes for takeoff, eight minutes for landing, and about 70 percent of all aircraft accidents happen here, so that’s the most nervous part requiring extreme caution. During that time, even if the pilot recognizes a dangerous situation, the chance of having accident is very high due to the difficulty of immediate response.


Air safety is a very important issue, as it is a matter of life and death. Therefore, the role of an airport to support safe take-off and landing of aircraft is essential. We can’t leave out Incheon Airport when discussing reliable supporters of the air traffic. Incheon Airport has established a record for nonstop and accident-free operations for 17 years in a row, building strong trust as truly the most secure airport in the world.


Incheon Airport’s Unrivaled Safety Know-how! Are you curious about the secret? The secret is in the Air Navigational Aids!

What is the Air Navigational Aids?

Air Navigational Aids refer to those that transmit essential information to the aircraft, such as the location of the aircraft when approaching runway, and landing angle, to help it take off and land safely. It’s kind of a lighthouse for an aircraft.

There are about 2,400 Air Navigational Aids operating across the country. Incheon Airport operates more than 1,000 Air Navigational Aids of 44 types, including Airport Surveillance Radar, Aeronautical Information & Telecommunication Facilities, Instrument Landing System, and Aeronautical Ground Light Facilities.

To take care of the safe skyway from take-off to landing, systematic Air Navigational Aids and Air Navigational Aid Specialists are keeping a tight watch on the runway at Incheon Airport!

Then, let’s take a look at how well aircrafts are being supported. The precise and detailed protection process will hugely surprise you.

Don't worry and come in.
Explore the process of protecting the aircraft!

1) Checking the movements of the aircraft with radar

No airplane can sneak into Incheon Airport. It shows right on the radar.

The Airport Surveillance Radar provides air traffic control services for incoming and outgoing aircraft.

The primary surveillance radar detects the aircraft’s location by processing the radio signals reflected from the aircraft, and the secondary surveillance radar detects location, altitude, and ID by mutual communications with the aircraft..

The detected track data and flight data provided by airlines are combined in Seoul approach control system and provide air traffic control information to Seoul approach, Incheon, and Kimpo control towers, and support the safe operation by controlling air traffic flow.

2) Communication Support between Air Traffic Control Agency and Aircraft

For successful take-off and landing process of the aircraft, the controls and the pilots must work in harmony. Aeronautical Information & Telecommunication Facilities are the ones that facilitate their communication.

Aeronautical Information & Telecommunication Facilities provide reliable voice and text communication between aircraft control facility..

The voices of pilots received from receiver stations are sent to the controller via the communication control station, and the voices of controllers are transmitted to the pilot via the communication control station and transmitter stations.

Besides, the efficiency of control is increased by operating the Automatic Terminal Information Facility that repeatedly transmits runway information and Pre-Departure Clearance Facility providing services that request and confirm the takeoff of aircraft in text.

3) Guiding safe landing of the aircraft

How does an aircraft trying to land at an airport find a runway, and land at the exact spot? It’s because of these facilities that support the safe landing.

Omnidirectional Range Facilities

Provide aircraft with the direction and distance information from the airport.

Instrument Landing System

ILS consists of markers, glide path, and localizers in order to provide 3D information.


Provides the correct distance and decision height.

Glide Path

Provides three degrees of landing angle information.


Provides the runway centerline information.

4) Safe ground control support from landing to takeoff

The foggy weather for a pilot trying to land is never easy.


Nevertheless, this ground control system is what makes it possible to land safely. The ground control system is a key facility for night and low visibility operations, and is responsible for the safety of everyone aboard the aircraft.


Meanwhile, the airport is busy 24 hours a day. There’s a lot of aircraft waiting to take off and land, and also a lot of vehicles are moving around. That’s why safe control services to ensure smooth traffic management at the airport is needed.

Surface movement radar detects aircraft by transmitting radio waves and receiving reflected radio waves.

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The Multilateration System displays CWPS by obtaining information such as flight position, identification, altitude, and velocity from aircraft.


They are provided to Air Traffic Controller who manage air traffic control to create safer airport management flow.

5) Aeronautical Light Aids in the Darkness

The reason why aircraft can move accurately even in the dark of night is because of the Aeronautical Light facilities. Aeronautical Light facilities guide the aircraft’s land moments at night and during low visibility situations through light and colors.

Along with Ground Movement Guidance and Control System (A-SMGCS), various and effective systems such as the Visual Docking Guidance System (VDGS) allow for the safe attaching the aircraft gate and help the aircraft move safely on the ground.

Based on the next-generation air service plan established by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the Air Navigational Aids at Incheon Airport will continue to create a more secure and efficient service system.

If someone who protects celebrities is a bodyguard, Don’t you think Incheon Airport should be named as “Fly + Guard”, responsible for sky safety?


Always considering value of safety as the top priority, Incheon Airport will do its best!

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