Canada's airports range in size from the large international aviation centres of the National Airports System to small Arctic aerodromes. All have an important part to play in Canadian air travel and all are susceptible to the weather. During the colder months, extremes of weather and temperature can cause slippery or blocked runways and aprons; contamination of aircraft surfaces with ice or snow and hazardous working conditions for employees. From spring through summer and autumn, thunderstorms and lightning pose a safety and equipment risk causing operational delays and cancellations. Plus, wind and visibility considerations affect ground movement patterns year around.
The Weather Network Commercial Services (TWNCS) specialized airport ground operation weather solutions allow managers and engineers to better plan for and respond to adverse seasonal weather conditions. These solutions include the following products and services:
Local Area Forecasts to anticipate upcoming weather on an hourly to daily basis out 7-days
Real-time Lightning Detection Network to accurately pinpoint the location of lightning activity
Canadian/US Composite Radar to monitor movement, evolution and strength of precipitation
FutureCast Radar that forecasts the movement of precipitation over a 6-hour timeframe
Meteorological Consultation to help qualify forecasts and provide details in rapidly changing weather conditions
Weather Warnings/Alerts for critical weather events based on pre-defined criteria
Consultation regarding Runway Weather Information Systems (RWIS) that provide observed pavement (runway or road) and atmospheric conditions as well as forecast information
Training to familiarize end users with the products and services received and their interpretation along with basic weather orientation as desired
By anticipating critical weather events airport ground operations managers and engineers will be able to issue timely alerts as well as predict personnel, equipment, chemical requirements and ground movement patterns. This will result in fewer runway closures, the efficient cost effective use of runway treatment options, shorter flight delays and safer airports.