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AOP16 — Guidance assistance through airfield ground lighting

Guidance assistance through airfield ground lighting (AGL) is intended for controllers, flight crews and vehicle drivers. It corresponds to the A-SMGCS Guidance function foreseen in ICAO’s A-SMGCS Manual (Doc. 9830). It links aerodrome lighting infrastructure with the taxi route management system (Routing & Planning), thus providing an unambiguous route for the taxiing aircraft/vehicle to follow.

To achieve this, taxiway centre line lights are automatically and progressively activated (switched on to green), either in segments of several lights or individually, along the route cleared by the controller. If this cleared route includes a limit and if a physical stop bar exists at this point, this stop bar is also automatically activated (switched on to red) when the mobile nears it. The solution strongly relies on the surface movement surveillance system to provide accurate aircraft position data.

Taxi clearances given to aircraft and vehicles are input in the system by the controllers and, the flight crew or vehicle driver is instructed to follow the greens up to a given clearance limit.

The automation might also include the management of priorities at intersections, based on pre-defined criteria (e.g. aerodrome rules, speed or target times). However, controllers are able to override the guidance decisions, which shows activated lights on the HMI.

Implementation of the objective AOP13 (Automated Assistance to Controller for Surface Movement Planning and Routing) is a pre-requisite for this objective.

NOTE FOR MILITARY AUTHORITIES: It is the responsibility of each military authority to review this Objective IN ITS ENTIRETY and address each of the SLoAs that the military authority considers RELEVANT for itself. This has to be done on top and above of the review of "MIL" SLoAs which identify actions EXCLUSIVE to military authorities.

Air Navigation Service Provider / Airport Operator / Airspace Users / International Organisations and Regional Bodies


Related Elements

Applicability Area(s) and Timescales

Applicability Area:
(Subject to local need)
Timescales From By Applicable to
Dummy date-for Analytics module only 31-05-2019 Applicability Area
Dummy date-for Analytics module only 01-01-2030 Applicability Area

Links to SESAR Solutions

Links to PCP ATM Sub-Functionalities

ICAO Block Modules: No associated data


Applicable legislation
Applicable ICAO Annexes and other references
Deployment Programme 2019
Family 2.4.1 - A-SMGCS Routing and Planning Functions
Operating Environments

Expected Performance Benefits

Increase of situational awareness from pilots perspectives. Reduction of unplanned / unwanted taxi route deviations. Significantly lower runway incursion risk
Reduction of controller workload (radio communication / instructions) will have a positive impact on the capacity of the airport’s ground movement system in particular at the aerodromes with multiple complex taxiways system and large manoeuvring area
Operational efficiency
Significant reduction in taxi time in both good and low visibility conditions. The reduction is strongly dependent of local conditions and will therefore differ per airport. The variability of taxi times (for the same combination of used parking position and runway) might be reduced
Cost efficiency
Identified by local business cases
Fewer speed changes as also reduce the number of stops along routes between runway and parking position (and vice versa). This reduces the fuel burn for taxiing both in good and low visibility conditions, although the benefits have been shown to be larger during low visibility
Not identified
  Code Title From By Related Enablers
ASP01 Upgrade CWP/HMI to display and manage lights and routes
ASP02 Develop and implement procedures for taxi guidance by AGL (controllers and pilots/drivers)
ASP03 Develop safety assessment of the changes imposed by taxi guidance by AGL
ASP04 Train all relevant staff in the taxi guidance by AGL
ASP05 Upgrade A-SMGCS to send taxi instructions as commands to the AGL system
APO01 Upgrade AGL system to enable the selective switching of the lamps
APO02 Upgrade A-SMGCS to send taxi instructions as commands to the AGL system
APO03 Develop and implement procedures for use of taxi guidance by AGL (Vehicle Driver)
APO04 Train all relevant staff in the taxi guidance by AGL
USE01 Develop and implement procedures for use of taxi guidance by AGL (Flight Crew)
USE02 Train all relevant staff in the taxi guidance by AGL (Flight Crew)
INT01 Develop the procedures and phraseology for taxi guidance by AGL
INT02 Integrate taxi guidance by AGL in MASPS for the A-SMGCS
Code Dates
1999 99
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2025 25

Supporting Material

Title Related SLoAs

EUROCONTROL - SPEC 171 - EUROCONTROL Specification for Advanced-Surface Movement Guidance and Control System (A-SMGCS) Services - Edition 1.0 / 03/2018

APO02, APO03, APO04, ASP01, ASP02, ASP03, ASP04, ASP05, USE01, USE02

ICAO - Deliverable of SLoA INT01, ICAO PANS ATM Amendment.


APO03, APO04, ASP02, ASP03, ASP04, INT01, USE02

SJU - SESAR Solution 47: Data pack for Guidance assistance through airfield ground lighting

APO02, APO03, APO04, ASP01, ASP02, ASP03, ASP04, ASP05, INT01, INT02, USE01, USE02

Consultation & Approval

Working Arrangement in charge
Airport Operations Team (AOT)
Outline description approved in
Latest objective review at expert level
Commitment Decision Body
Provisional Council (PC)
Objective approved/endorsed in
Latest change to objective approved/endorsed in