IndiGo, India’s leading carrier, became the first Airline in Asia to conduct Localiser Performance with Vertical Guidance (LPV) Approach. IndiGo conducted the LPV approach on its ATR 72-600 aircraft, equipped with GAGAN, at Kishangarh Airport (Ajmer) on April 28, 2022. This test flight is a part of the approval process with DGCA, which includes training of pilots, validation of approach, simulator sessions amongst others. The test flight was operated by Captain Sandip Sud and Capt Satish Veera and landed in the presence of Capt Shweta Singh, Dy CFOI, FSD, Cdr R.S. Jamwal, Director, ANS, Capt Adhiraj Yadav, SFOI, FSD, Capt Aditya Kumar Singh, FOI, FSD, Capt Vasu Gupta, FOI, FSD and Mr. Gaurav Raghuvanshi, AAI, and IndiGo team. This initiative was possible due to continuous endeavours of all stakeholders – MoCA, DGCA, ISRO, AAI and IndiGo.
GAGAN an acronym for GPS Aided GEO Augmented Navigation is an indigenously developed Space Based Augmentation System (SBAS), jointly developed by ISRO and AAI to provide lateral and vertical guidance on an approach, approximating the accuracy of a Category I ILS. LPV capability provides the airline operators a precise and near-precision instrument approach option with the lowest minima relative to other approach options, when ILS is either not installed or unavailable, especially in case of RCS airports.
Mr. Ronojoy Dutta, Wholetime Director and CEO, IndiGo said, “This is a huge leap for Indian Civil Aviation and a firm step towards “Aatmanirbhar Bharat”, as India becomes the third country in the world to have their own SBAS system after the USA and Japan. GAGAN will be a gamechanger for civil aviation, leading to modernization of the airspace, reducing flight delays, bringing in fuel savings and improving flight safety. We would like to congratulate and thank MoCA, DGCA, ISRO and AAI for making IndiGo a part of this historical pilot that will change the flight path of Indian aviation.”
DGCA issued a mandate for all aircrafts being registered in India after 1 July 2021 to be fitted with GAGAN equipment. GAGAN Satellite Based Augmentation System (SBAS) user equipment is interoperable with all international SBAS systems – WAAS, EGNOS & MSAS. In India’s civil aviation sector, GAGAN will modernize the airspace, reduce flight delays, save fuel, and improve flight safety. Additionally, GAGAN will provide benefits to many other sectors including transportation, railways, surveying, maritime, highways, telecom, and security agencies.