S4GA - Helipad and Airport Lighting Company
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Webinar: Backup Runway Lighting for International Airports

This S4GA Webinar is dedicated to Backup Runway Lighting for International Airports.

During the Webinar we present S4GA solution for international airports that are:

  • under runway rehabilitation works
  • struggling with an unreliable primary AGL
  • struggling with unreliable mains power supply.

For such cases, S4GA offers solar airfield lighting system – a cost-saving and cost-effective solution that operates 365 days on solar energy. 

Benefits of Solar Runway Lighting have been discussed during the Webinar:

  • quick installation
  • easy maintenance
  • availability 24/7
  • close to zero operational costs
  • compliance with ICAO / ADM

The Backup Runway Lighting for International Airports Webinar was hosted by Mr Łukasz Kornacki – S4GA Business Development Manager and Expert in Aviation Infrastructure.

  • Video & Multimedia
  • Product Description
  • Video & Multimedia
  • Product Description


Questions and Answers

Q1: How do you detect main AGL failure to switch on your system as backup, if the airport’s monitoring system is also unreliable (that is sometimes the case) or not present? A1: AGL failure is understood as a complete lack of runway lights. If there are runway lights not working, then you activate backup lights.
Q2: Please be advised, whilst in the Presentation you only refer to ICAO documents, remember that there are IEC Technical Documents to consider eg IEC 61820 ( new version yet to be prepared & issued).  A2: IEC covers only series circuit powered AGL system. So it is not really applicable for Solar AGL.

Compliance of Solar AGL is covered by ICAO Annex 14, Vol I (photometrics, colors), Aerodrome Design Manual: frangibility, jet blast resistance.

Also ICAO or Aerodrome Design Manual do not define power source of the light. Therefore, both series circuit or solar power supply can be equally used. Assuming that AGL system performs in a way required by ICAO.

Q3: I can see that you do not mount lights on the runway surface – just positioning them near the existing light, am I correct? A3: Lights are of course mounted to the surface.
Q4: What about installing servomotors mounted at the solar panel for the auto cleaning of the solar panel? A4: Good idea. However this solution would require too much energy.
Q5: What happens if there’s no sunlight and the solar panels don’t get charged? A5: S4GA lights are equipped with battery that allows for 180 – 600 hours of autonomy, depending on the fitting, as it can vary the energy consumption.

This autonomy protects the airport from running out of the energy, when there is no sun.

Watch our webinar on how S4GA runway lighting operates 365 days on solar energy.

Q6: Can you perform photometric test on them? A6: Our lights are testes for photometrics and colours in Intertek Laboratory. S4GA holds verification reports for all type of lights.

See our certificates here.

Q7: Does the cleaning process has to be achieved manually for each unit? A7: Yes, the cleaning process is done manually with a wet sponge.
Q8: Do you also have a similar systems available for approach lights? A8: S4GA can provide approach lights, as well as runway lights for temporary system. Our approach lights are certified for low-intensity systems. 
Q9: As the usage of solar lights is temporary, can these solar lights be rented by supplier so there would be no need to purchase them? A9:  No, S4GA doesn’t rent products for temporary usage.
Q10: Have you done any cost comparison between solar and wired AGL in case of temporary solution? A10: Yes, we have done such comparison. In a nutshell, almost every comparison that I saw, for different countries o regions, that have different suppliers and different prices of conventional systems – S4GA typically gives us an economic advantage of 10 – 30% lower costs of purchasing, that don’t include cost of operating which is zero, so it’s 100% cheaper, and maintenance costs with are at least 50 – 70% lower, as the replacement of the batteries happens every 2-3 years, and cleaning of the solar panel comparing to work that has to be done on a conventional system, even when installed temporarily, is significant.
Q11: Do you have the same solar AFL lights solution for the runway closure? A11: Yes, we can supply also the barricade and the runway closure lights.
Q12: What about the inset light – do you have the solar solution? A12: Yes, we can have them available. We do it by providing a solar engine with inbuilt CCR, that would run several inset lights and power them remotely from the tower. We have a complete solution for that and of course everything is integrated and controlled from S4GA ALCMS Control and Monitoring System.

It’s all coming in a package and is ready to use.

Q13: Is the used solar lights with DC lamp? What about the battery autonomy? A13: Yes, LED lights are driven by DC, and the autonomy of the battery is 180 – 600 hours, depending on the fitting.
Q14: Are you able to provide a monitoring of a single light? A14: Yes, in S4GA ALCMS Control and Monitoring System there is an inbuilt functionality of individual light monitoring.

Our ALCSM provides a variety of information, including not only charging speed or state of the battery, but it also gives the ability to monitor if the lighting unit is not moving – so it’s not being stolen – what can happen in non fenced airports.

Q15: What is the protection to solar panel from aircraft thrust? A15: S4GA fittings have beed certified according to ICAO for jet blast that covers 240 km/h resistance of the whole fitting, including the solar panel and the mounting.

Certificate is available on request so don’t hesitate to contact us or look up our certificates online.

You can also watch the video of Jet Blast Test of S4GA Airfield Lights.

Q16: What is the battery time life?  A16: It depends on the battery type: minimum 2 years for our standard battery and maximum 4-5 years for non-standard (lithium-ion) battery.
Q17: In a dusty and windy environment what is the efficiency of the solar panel? Also does the system monitor it in terms to program their cleaning? A17: S4GA ALCMS Control and Monitoring System gives the notification about charging efficiency dropping down and in that way advices Users to clean the panels.

The solar panel will work in a dusty and windy environment. The system has been installed in many different regions and in different environments, for example in a Libyan desert, South Africa, South America or in Yukon in Canada, that is located in North with limited amount of sun, but yet it has been operating there permanently.

See here S4GA projects from around the World.

Q18: What will be the power consumed by each fixtures? A18: It depends on the fixture type – the maximum power consumption would be 9.1 W, in low-intensity runway edge light. When talking about taxiway light it will be substantially less – it would be around 0.3 W.

The range is pretty high and this is also why autonomy differs and depends on the fixture.

Q19: Is there the best angle for the solar panel? A19: Yes, there is the best angle for the solar paned it depends on the North-South location.

If you are moving toward Equator, then the solar panel should be almost flat (in a range of 20° – 15°  to the horizon, to maximise the generation of the power.

When going toward North, the inclination of the solar panel should be in a range of 45°.

In S4GA we use standard, optimised inclination, that is 33° and it in vast majority of the applications it gives the optimum efficiency of the solar panel charging and the potential loss to non-optimised angle is minimal.

Q20: What about glare of solar panel? A20: The glare effect comes from reflective components (e.g. mirrors or white surfaces), but the black solar panel is designed to capture solar rays, therefore it doesn’t give a glare.
Q21: What is the maximum temperature that your product can carry? A21: The maximum temperature is limited by the battery. Our standard battery (lead-acid AGM) will operate in up to 50°C, but we have also an option to install a redundant battery, that will carry up to 80°C.

Other component are not limited by the temperature.

Q22: Have you installed this system for runway operated will LVP conditions Cat II and Cat III operation? A22: When we speak about temporary runway rehabilitation works, or any type of this operation, the LVP or Cat II would not be an option – the maximum would be Cat I of operation and typically not even, as the runway will be operated under non-precision conditions.
 Q23: Do you manufacture a customised product according to the country’s specs regarding sun rays and energy output or you have a standard product from the efficiency point of view? A23: We have a standard product from the efficiency point of view. Of course customisation is possible, but it comes with extra cost.
Q24: Can you create a moving solar panel to follow the sun? A24: Yes we can, but we are not doing that for an obvious reasons of the cost and efficiency. Moreover, it is not required, as the solar panel by the way how it charges has to be facing North or South, and that is enough to cover full 12 hours cycle of the sun on the horizon.
Q25: Is it possible to change the light type from WW to WY? A25: Yes, it is possible to replace or change the light type and it can be done locally on-site.
Q26: Can we change the type of your light from portable to solar, by using extra fittings? A26: Yes, and that’s exactly how it could be done – by using extra fittings.
Q27: What about the maintenance frequency for the LED bulb and available man-hours? A27: The maintenance frequency is pretty straight forward – LEDs have about 100,000 hours autonomy. When properly cooled – LEDs last for a long time, longer than with a typical experience with a halogen systems.


Watch webinar on Youtube

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