An Air Traffic Control Officer (ATCO) or an Air Traffic Controller manages air traffic on and within the vicinity of an airport according to established procedures & policies to prevent collisions and minimize delays arising from traffic congestion.
They are responsible for the safe, orderly, and expeditious movement of air traffic through the nation’s airspace.
Duties of an Air Traffic Controller Include:
- Operating various types of equipment such as: radios, telephones, interphones, computer systems, radar, recording systems, weather equipment, light guns, airport/runway lighting systems, and backup equipment
- Issuing landing/takeoff instructions.
- Encodes, decodes, and posts notices to airmen & ground staff in an airport.
- Answering radio calls from arriving and departing aircraft.
- Issuing air traffic clearances.
- Alerting airport emergency crews and other designated personnel when aircraft are having flight difficulties.
- Issuing information such as which runway to use, wind velocity and direction, visibility, taxiing instructions, and pertinent data on other aircraft operating in vicinity.
- Providing advice based on personal observations and information from the National Weather Service, IFR control facilities, flight service stations, pilots, and other sources.
- IFR control facilities are terminals that provides air traffic control services to aircraft operating under Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) to and from one or more adjacent airports. This is typically provided to aircrafts operating on flight plans within a controlled airspace and principally during the en route phase of flight.
- Taking and disseminating weather observations.
- Transferring control to receiving facilities when aircraft leave their airspace and receiving control of aircraft coming into their airspace.
- Coordinating with and issuing instructions to airport vehicles and personnel.
- Maintaining and disseminating records of daily operations
Air Traffic Controllers are the primary POCs (point of contacts) for all Base Operations for any issues (construction, quiet hours, etc.) that may affect airfield availability.
Air Traffic Management (ATM) in India
ATM is controlled by the Airports Authority of India.
You will find multiple job posts on the official recruitment dashboard of AAI (Airports Authority of India). Air Traffic Management is controlled by AAI but of course, unlike railways, the aircrafts are not owned by it. They are obviously owned by the individual carriers. However, all ATM jobs are listed on the government portal and you will have to attempt the ATC written exam if you want to get recruited as a Junior Executive or Manager.
Jobs in India are fewer compared to other first nations. This is primarily because the ATM infrastructure in the country is not as upgraded yet in terms of automation systems & technology for example, complete shifting from ground-based navigation to satellite-based navigation. However, there are regular job updates on the website. Do keep a tab on it.
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Air Traffic Control Specialists play an extremely critical role in air operations management and are responsible for passenger safety in commercial flight operations as well as the safety of army personnel in military aircrafts.
They perform crucial tasks right from take-off to landing as well as all operations in the en-route phase of an aircraft. This career pathway may be new to you as this is not a very popular area of work in India yet. However, plans to upgrade our aviation management processes are underway and this shall soon see a boost of jobs.
Career planning is an intensely tricky process and requires expert opinion. iDreamCareer has been guiding millions of young minds and is ready to help you too. Do contact us in case you want to know more about this career pathway.
Pages you’d need:
- Air Traffic Management – AAI, India
- Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM) – United States Department of Transportation
- Types of air traffic control facilities (Federal Aviation Administration, U.S. Department of Transportation)
- Flight Operations Supervisor – An example of remote job posting with “Amentum Services, Inc.” in Maharashtra
- Air Traffic Control (ATC) Careers – An example of job posting with “Serco Inc.”
- Air Traffic Manager (USA) – An example of job posting with “Serco Inc.”
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With a Master’s in Biophysics-Biostatistics, Sreenanda acquired professional experience in computational proteomics of human molecules. She is currently working with the Research and Data Team at iDreamCareer.