PAPI Calibration

Precision Approach Path Indicator

PAPI Calibration with drones

CANARD provides an end-to-end service that performs quick and accurate PAPI light inspections and calibrations using a custom software, procedures and sensor-equipped RPAs (Remote Piloted Aircraft, or drones) with precise satellite positioning, saving airport operators time and money in maintenance tasks.

We offer a reliable and economical alternative to conventional flight inspections, allowing more flexibility and increasing the automation and intelligence in the calibration of airport NAVAID systems. Our RPAs operate both day and night and align with the airports’ specific maintenance requirements.

Our solutions combines state-of-the-art hardware with our custom software and procedures to fully automate RPA operation. We have cleared the regulatory hurdles to operate in the complex and restricted areas of the airside zones.

Our procedure and software allow the measurement of all the key parameters required for a PAPI inspection and calibration such as:

  • PAPI installation horizontality
  • Transition angles for each PAPI unit
  • PAPI system nominal angle
  • MEHT
  • Angular coverage

After the inspection, a report is generated in real time with the results.

We help airports to:

  • Decrease management time, and free-up maintenance staff capacity
  • Significantly improve inspection accuracy and repeatability
  • Comply with inspection timeframes by providing increased flexibility from operating day and night, and availability

Certifications and customers

CANARD has obtained an official certification from the French DGAC for CANARD’s solution and procedures, while certification from other CAAs and entities are requested and being processed.

These accolades have allowed us to successfully perform PAPI verifications and commissioning in France, Poland, Spain, Finland and other countries. The capabilities of our tools have made possible that these operations have been performed in under 20 minutes and with less than 6 minutes of actual drone flights.

CANARD has even operated within controlled airspace in Charles de Gaulle airport (France) and Pori (Finland), taking advantage of scheduled runway closings at night or small windows between commercial flights.

Computer vision

We are also working on computer vision algorithms to automatically detect the transition of the PAPI lights. This capability improves the accuracy and repeatability of the solution, as well as the overall performance. With automatic transition detection, the time required for the PAPI inspection is greatly reduced, as well as the need for a payload operator to assist in the operation.

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