HC Deb 08 July 1964 vol 698 cc399-400
26. Sir E. Errington

asked the Minister of Aviation what automatic blind-landing system is being developed; in what aircraft it is installed; and when it will be introduced on commercial passenger flights.

Mr. Amery

An automatic landing system has been developed by Messrs. Smiths (Aviation Division) in conjunction with the aircraft companies concerned for the Mk. 2 V-Bombers and Argosy aircraft of the Royal Air Force. Automatic landing systems for civil operations are being developed for the Trident, again by Messrs. Smiths with Hawker Siddeley, and for the VC10 by Messrs. Elliott Brothers with the British Aircraft Corporation. It is planned to begin using these civil systems on commercial passenger flights to suitably equipped airports in 1967. But at that stage they will only be used in conditions of adequate visibility.

By 1969, we should have built up enough experience to undertake blind landing on passenger flights. A similar system will be installed in Belfast transport aircraft for the R.A.F. All these systems are based on work carried out by the Ministry of Aviation Blind Landing Experimental Unit at R.A.E., Bedford.

Sir E. Errington

I thank my right hon. Friend for that information. Is it correct that, in the foreseeable future, he hopes to standardise an automatic blind-landing system at the main British airfields and on commercial passenger lines?

Mr. Amery

It is naturally our hope to achieve standardisation and we are in touch with other Governments about this.

Mr. Rankin

Will the Ministry be responsible for installing the necessary equipment for landing these aircraft under blind-landing conditions at municipal airports?

Mr. Amery

That will be a matter for agreement and discussion with the airport owning authorities, wherever they may be.