Southampton Goes Smart

Southampton Airport completes major lighting upgrade.

The first Runway in the UK to install SmartBolts.

Southampton International Airport (SOU) has just completed an extension to its main runway and upgrade of its airfield lighting to new LED fittings from Airfield Lighting Systems UK Limited (ALS) in Wickford, Essex. 

The 164m extension to the northern end of Southampton’s runway will allow the airport to attract new airlines and offer new routes, creating exciting opportunities for business and leisure, while guaranteeing the airport’s viability.    

The upgrade makes history as the airport chose to install SmartBolts from ALS on the Runway making it the first airport in the UK to do so. 140 SmartBolts were used to secure the Runway Centerline fittings in a new initiative to reduce FOD and reduce maintenance time by utilising the visual identification system on the bolt. 

SmartBolts have a colour indicator built in that works on tension and when the bolts are at the correct setting the SmartBolt indicator turns black.  If during a routine inspection, the bolts appear red then the engineer knows action is required.

The project also saw 126 x ALS LED Inset Runway Centerline installed, 59 x LED Approach lights, 56 x LED Elevated Runway Edge Lights, 20 x LED Threshold Wing Bars, 5 x LED Runway End,  10 x LED Inset Runway Edge lights and all were installed using our high precision sighting device. Alongside this were all the necessary adaptor rings, transformers, cables, and connector kits.

The project was handled by Volker Fitzpatrick who worked closely with ALS to ensure the meticulous planning of the project was completed smoothly.

Keith Spicer said, ”We were delighted to work closely with the team at Volker Fitzpatrick on this project and thrilled that Southampton chose to be the first runway in the UK to utilise the SmartBolts safety product in its runway centreline lights.”

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