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Lighting the way for airport safety

14 December 2009

Signalling device specialist, Werma Signaltechnik’s research and development for the machine and factory floor safety sectors has led to a rather high profile implementation of its warning beacons at one of the world’s busiest airports

Lighting the way for airport safety
Lighting the way for airport safety

Probably best known for its range of industrial signal towers, optical signal devices, and optical-audible signal devices, Werma Signaltechnik continues to strengthen its safety offering for sectors well beyond the factory floor. Currently benefiting from this innovative product portfolio is Zurich Airport, Switzerland’s largest and busiest international hub, which saw more than 20 million people pass through its gates in 2007. Ensuring the enhanced safety of travellers and airport employees are some 10,000 warning beacons – a variety of different products, installed primarily to warn both personnel and taxiing aircraft of potential hazards.

After one-and-a-half years of testing in situ at the airport, the high visibility 280 series Obstruction Beacon is being put to work in a variety of applications, principally on temporary mobile illuminations to light up the path an aircraft must follow around a particular hazard; for example, an area temporarily out of bounds due to works being carried out. The beacons operate day and night, and, irrespective of weather conditions, ensure an exceptionally high degree of visibility.

The 280 series beacon is a derivative of the standard LED Beacon supplied by WERMA for many standard industrial applications, which has been especially developed for use as a ‘low-intensity obstruction light’ in accordance with International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) requirements. The product is approved to ICAO Annex 14, which prescribes requirements for the marking of aviation obstacles, including light intensity levels and colour, beam angle and direction. In addition to the exceptional light output, the unit has a high impact resistant dome, and is available in both 24V and 230V versions.

Factors that attracted the airport’s contractor to the 280 series beacon were its IP65 sealing, its cost effectiveness (conventional airside beacons can cost up to four times more), its simple design and easy assembly. Another important feature is its alternative 24V operation, which was regarded as a safety plus point.

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