PAPI Calibration

Our solution for calibration of PAPI systems fully replaces the need of flight inspection aircraft. It is being used regularly by airports such as Charles de Gaulle (Paris) since 2018.



PAPI inspections in a few minutes, minimising runway downtime and reducing indirect costs.


Repeatable and accurate measurements, allowing for better and quicker calibrations.


Day&night operations allow easier scheduling. And with portability, it can serve remote locations.


It removes the need of hazardous flight inspection manoeuvres. No noise or pollution.


1. Register the Operation
2. Inspect the PAPI
3. Generate the Reports

Preparing the operation takes less than 1 minute. The only action that has to be done is to select the airport and the runway from our database. Once this is done, all the required data is generated automatically: missions, waypoints, distances, altitudes, etc. There is no need to read the procedures to figure out which measurements that are to be made and where. Once the operation is created in our platform, one can simply access our Calibration Tool App in the tablet and download it with all the tasks to be performed. This database of airports, runways & NAVAIDs can be expanded and updated with an easy-to-use web interface.

Once the corresponding operation has been downloaded to the inspection app, the operator launches the mission & monitors the automated procedures. The operator is guided throughout the mission. Each mission takes only a few minutes of flight and can be repeated as many times as needed. Measurements are available in real-time, so PAPI adjustments can be made quickly by the technicians.

Reports are viewable on-site through the app. There is no need to download the measured data obtained to a computer or to go back to the office to process it. Reports contain all the relevant measurements and parameters as they would appear on any report from flight inspection aircraft, organised in tables and images. Reports, along with all the measurements, images or videos, are uploaded into our platform, being accessible for future reference or for additional processing.


Transition angles
Angular Coverage
Angle and MEHT

Our solution checks that the horizontality of the installation of PAPI units is within tolerances as specified by ICAO (+/-1.25%). This means that all of the lights are on the same level. This is specially interesting in commissioning, to verify that the installation is correct.

The main part of the PAPI calibration or inspection is making sure that each one of the lights has the transition RED-PINK-WHITE at the correct angle. Our solution measures this angle accurately to provide adjustments needed to the technician in real time.

In case of dual/double PAPI installations (PAPI on both sides of the runway) it is important to verify that corresponding lights on both sides change color at the same time from the pilot’s point of view. Our solution also includes this check as part of the procedure.

The angular coverage task is aimed to measure the limit angles on each side of the runway at which the PAPI is usable (all 4 lights are clearly visible).

Following ICAO specification, from all the measurements taken, our app automatically calculates the final parameters such as the PAPI glidepath angle and (Minimum Eye Height over Threshold) to verify against the published data in the airport AIP.


1Does this solution fully replace the need of flight inspection aircraft?

Yes, our app includes the procedure to check several parameters that allow verification that the PAPI is correctly adjusted. In fact, we have already performed inspections and commissioning in airports that are official and valid.

2How long does it take to do a PAPI inspection?

With our solution, it takes just 5 minutes to perform all the measurements for a PAPI. In case of calibration, the technician would adjust the lights as needed with the measurements provided and another check can quickly verify that the PAPI is correct.

3Is this solution validated?

Yes, we have obtained official recognition to consider our reports valid in several countries. In fact, our solution has been used for ALL PAPI calibrations and commissioning at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris (the 2nd busiest airport in the Europe with more than 70M passengers) since 2018.

4Can the solution be purchased?

Yes, in fact, we have designed all the tools so that anyone can do the inspections for the airport after receiving our training. The solution can be acquired by airport operators, ANSPs, CAAs or any company or entity that can provide this service to airports. Ask as for a quote to acquire the solution.

5Can you operate it with wind and rain?

Yes, we have performed PAPI inspections with SNOW and -10ºC, with up to 15-knot WINDS and even with light RAIN. Although the real benefit is that with this solution, you have the flexibility of taking advantages of small windows where the wind goes down or it stops raining.

6How far & high does the drone fly?

The drone can fly several km away and hundreds of meters high if needed. However, according to our procedures, the drone flies within the airport, no more than 300m away and usually below 30-40 meters AGL.

7How long do the batteries last?

Depending on weather conditions, the batteries can last 15-25 minutes. This is MORE than enough to do our PAPI calibrations, which just take 5-10 minutes, meaning that several inspections can be done with the same batteries. In any, case, it takes less than 1 minute to change batteries and fly again.

8How do you ship the drone to different airports?

All the equipment can be carried out as checked-in luggage with any commercial airline. We have reached the most remote locations taking up to 4 different flights with just 1 person without any issue. Batteries need to be carried as carry-on luggage.

9Are you allowed to fly drones at airports?

Yes, by obtaining the necessary authorisations in each country. CANARD has been authorised to fly drones in airports in several countries already, and we can help our customers that acquire our solution to obtain such authorisations. This is a very important matter, as safety is paramount in aviation and all procedures and coordination protocols must be stablished and follow to ensure safety.

10I already have a drone, can it be used with your software for PAPI calibration?

Our solution is compatible with DJI M600 PRO and DJI M210 RTK drones. Contact us if you want a quote for a license to be able to use our software and training to perform PAPI calibrations with it.

11Can this solution perform all the types of inspections?

Yes, the system is able to do different types of visual inspections (PAPI, ALS, Lights), ILS measurements, photogrammetry and others. Al the capabilities are built into the same app. Contact us to get a quotation for a solution for multiple inspections.


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