Considerations for Choosing Airfield Approach Lighting

In the United States, there are approximately 5,000 public use airports and approximately 3,000 of them are designated for general aviation (GA). Although these airports tend to have less traffic and smaller budgets than their larger commercial counterparts, they are still responsible for complying with FAA regulations as well as ensuring the safety of passengers and crew. The lighting needs of GA airports are distinct from those of their commercial counterparts. While larger airports have more extensive approach lighting systems that include ALSF systems, GA airfields typically rely on systems such as Medium Intensity Approach Light System with Runway Alignment Indicator Lights (MALSR) and Precision Approach Path Indicators (PAPI) to meet rigorous light output requirements to ensure safe landings.

It is critical to have the right halogen and xenon flashlamps available for approach systems as these systems help pilots align the aircraft with the centerline of the runway during instrument landing approaches, they also can be detected by the aircraft’s existing enhanced vision system. MALSRs can be invaluable when landing in conditions with zero visibility.

Choosing the appropriate type of lamp for airfields can also reduce airfield maintenance costs and ensure the maximum return on your investment. When allocating resources for your airfield, keep in mind that certain approach lighting systems require more upkeep than others. For example, PAPI lights have specific procedures for performing preventive maintenance whereas a PAR38 for a MALSR is much more straightforward.

Amglo offers a wide selection of quality replacement lamps for these different ALS systems, including MALSR, MALSF, ALSF-1, ALSF-2, ODALS, RAIL and other visual guidance lighting systems for approach. Built to overcome extreme weather and vibrations, Amglo’s airfield lighting solutions have met the demands of airfield and airport operators for more than eight decades and are developed to comply with FAA requirements.

Selecting the right high-quality airfield lighting and approach lighting systems is a crucial step for any airport regardless of classification. The right lamps can allow budget-conscious airports to prioritize safety while also reducing operating costs.