How Airports are Hosting Flightradar24 ADS-B Receivers and Improving the Passenger Experience
Airports looking to improve their passenger experience and operational efficiency are turning to Flightradar24 as a no-cost solution for their flight tracking needs. By hosting a Flightradar24 ADS-B receiver, airports—like all our hosts—receive a free Business subscription to Flightradar24, which features our newly updated Airport and Fleet views. These views are perfect for large format displays in terminal areas or for use in operational environments. With Flightradar24 airports are not just able to tell customers when a flight will arrive, they’re able to show them its exact location in a visually immersive environment.
Flightradar24 receivers are small plug-and-play computers connected to an ADS-B and GPS antenna that share flight data with the Flighradar24 network. That flight data is then combined with flight schedules and other information to provide a comprehensive flight tracking experience.
We talked with three airports to discuss why they’re hosting Flightradar24 receivers and how Flightradar24 has benefited their operations and their passengers.
Chicago-O’Hare International Airport
Ramp Controllers in one of O’Hare’s concourses were looking for ways to improve the efficiency of their operation and have a holistic picture of where their aircraft were before they called for a gate assignment and turned to Flightradar24 for a solution. By using Flightradar24 to see exactly where inbound aircraft are in flight, the controllers are better able to plan for their arrival and develop the most efficient sequence to get flights into the gate and passengers off the aircraft. The ramp controllers are coordinating aircraft from multiple airlines with competing priorities and hosting a receiver makes those easier to manage.
According to ramp controller José Guillén, “With a Flightradar24 receiver and the free account, we’re able to better coordinate push-backs, flights entering the alley to their gates, and gate changes as necessary, since some flights often arrive early.” O’Hare is also a diversion airport for a number of airlines and Airfield Operations staff at O’Hare use FR24 to monitor diversions and prepare for their arrival.
Northern Territory Airports, Australia
For Northern Territory Airports, hosting Flightradar24 receivers is about giving passengers and their families peace of mind. “Our Airports; Darwin, Tennant Creek, and Alice Springs are vertically inline through Australia’s central outback,” says Tim Woods of Northern Territory Airports. “Until we installed FR24 receivers at our airports, coverage was not available through Central Australia. It was important to us that those traveling between our airports could be tracked in real time by friends and family.”
To give travelers and their families that peace of mind, Flightradar24 is being streamed on the airport’s website, intranet, and Flightradar24 worked with Northern Territory Airports specifically to write code for automated displays in the terminal. A 50’ screen was programmed to display a 100km radius, and flight information cycled through each aircraft at random providing friends and family with up to date flight information.
“Our airports were the first in Australia to adopt the receivers and partner with Flightradar24. Together we developed the first ‘in lounge’ automated display. Other tracking providers were not considered as their information was delayed.” Woods notes, “It is important that the information we hand onto our customers is up to date and in real time. If the app says a plane is about to land, then we should expect to see the plane land when we look down on the runway from the airport café.”
Woods and his team initially installed receivers for passenger benefit, but his team has found other ways to use Flightradar24.
Airport staff are able to track their flights and forecast when the pilots will call in for bay allocation information. Similarly, the airport and airlines are able to deal with unexpected diversions, from knowing where the plane is, the ground crew can be better prepared to accommodate the unscheduled landing.
Manassas Regional Airport
At Manassas Regional Airport, Richard Allabaugh was dissatisfied with his previous flight tracking provider as it was “very costly and did not appear to have as many features as FlightRadar24.” According to Allabaugh, “hosting the receiver has cut our flight tracking costs down and provided us with better information. The FlightRadar24 website runs as a live feed alongside weather radar in the airport’s administration office.”
Hosting a Flightradar24 receiver is also helping the Manassas Regional Airport become a better neighbor. The airport is looking into acquiring noise monitoring equipment as part of an outreach program and the data received by the ADS-B equipment can be integrated into some of these software applications. Already having the ADS-B data “will certainly help in the implementation process,” says Allabaugh.
Improving the Traveling Experience
When airports host a Flightradar24 receiver, they’re not just improving the traveling experience for passengers and customers at the airport. The improved coverage that on-airfield receivers offer allows us to track more flights and give our users the information they need. Whether it’s precise arrival information so loved ones can be picked up from the airport or airline operations centers knowing where all their aircraft are at any given time, airport coverage offers benefits far beyond those inside the terminal.
If you are interested in hosting a Flightradar24 receiver at your airport, our simple online application process is available on our website. If you have questions about hosting a receiver, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.