Boeing has delivered a 737 equipped with an advanced landing system that will guide the airplane to runways with unprecedented accuracy.
Unlike current technology, which relies solely on information from ground stations, the Global Positioning Landing System (GLS) integrates data from the global navigation satellite system, ground stations and a multi-mode receiver on the airplane to provide pinpoint accuracy of the airplane's position relative to the runway and surrounding terrain.
"Boeing is committed to a safe and effective global air transportation system. This precision approach and landing information will enhance safety by significantly improving takeoff and landing capability at airports around the world," said Captain Ray Craig, 737 Chief Pilot. "GLS increases the Next-Generation 737's lead as the most technologically advanced airplane in its class, and enhances the revenue-generating capability for airlines."
The FAA certified the GLS system following an extensive three-year testing program, during which the system proved to be a reliable and flawless navigation system suitable for automatic landings and low visibility takeoffs. JAA certification is expected soon.
Initially, GLS is certified to support Category I operations, which allow airplanes to operate in low visibility conditions. In the future, as GLS ground stations become available worldwide, the system will be able to support Category III operations, which allow airplanes to operate in very low or near zero visibility conditions.