Bird Strike Committee Proceedings


Date of this Version

August 2001


Serious multi-engine strikes on civil aviation aircraft continue to occur despite bird control efforts at and around airports. Radar-based bird warning systems currently used in military aviation are largely unsuitable for operational use in civil aviation because of the considerable constraints and inflexibility inherent in civil aviation operations. Pilots of civil aviation aircraft need to get timely, pertinent information on bird hazards, complete with options on how to minimize the associated risk. Recent advances in the design of radars and computers allow for the development of a real-time radar-based system to detect and warn of high-risk situations involving birds. High-risk situations are those that may result in serious damage such as multi-engine power loss and/or fatalities. The bird information, as collected by a radar and analyzed for risk by a computer, could be passed on to the pilots either directly via an up-link or through the Air Traffic Services (ATS) providers. The airport bird controllers could obtain the bird warnings directly at the radar site and/or through the ATS providers. A radar-based bird warning system will need to be developed in close consultation with all the stakeholders involved, i.e., pilots, ATS providers, airlines, airport operators and their bird control staff, and regulatory agencies.