The US Federal Aviation Administration has completed a five-year evaluation of a system of runway and taxiway ultraviolet emitters designed to detect incursions.

The developer, Maryland-based Norris Electro Optical Systems, says its system is ready for production and could be installed within 12 to 18 months.

The Autonomous Runway Incursion Prevention System (ARIPS) uses UV light emitted from modified runway and taxiway lights, along with corresponding detectors, to create “trip wires” at runway thresholds and crossings. Unaffected by rain and fog, these can automatically detect moving aircraft and other vehicles. An incursion would be reported to the affected pilots by changing the state of runway status indicators.

An ARIPS prototype with 18 emitter-sensor pairs was installed on selected runways and taxiways at Providence, Rhode Island’s Green airport. The system was tested against six runway-incursion scenarios, based on actual incidents, including a potential collision on two intersecting runways and an aircraft blundering onto an active runway from a taxiway.

Source: Flight International