Call for an instant quote
0345 90 80 161
Open Mon to Fri 09:00 - 17:30 | Sat 09:00 - 16:00 (GMT)
03 June 2016 09:06
Could delayed flights be greatly reduced?
Holidaymakers using Heathrow Airport have seen a 60% drop in wind-related flight delays, research suggests.
Strong headwinds are responsible for making tourists late more than any other factor.
But new technology successfully trialled at the west London travel hub has brought about a sharp increase in aircraft arriving on schedule, the Daily Mail reports.
Tourists at Manchester and Gatwick airports will be the next to benefit from the so-called "time-based separation" (TBS) tech. And European airports are expected to follow suit.
Delayed flights are one of the curses of travellers' lives, getting their long-awaited holidays off to bad, anxious starts, especially if it causes a missed connection.
But taking out travel insurance can cover tourists against this as well as cancelled and abandoned flights.
It can also protect holidaymakers against lost baggage, mislaid passports and other travel documents, and stolen possessions.
How does TBS work?
Air traffic controllers (ATCs) have traditionally landed planes based on distance - with five miles (nautical) separating each big aircraft as they approach. Craft regularly have to circle in the skies as they await their turn if there are wind delays.
By changing the system to one based on timing instead, ATCs can better tailor the staggering of plane arrivals to the conditions.
The separation between planes narrows during severe headwinds, while times between landings stay the same. The distance expands during tail winds, although again the time stays the same.
Scientists developed the system after discovering that vortexes caused by plane engines and wings actually peter out more quickly in headwinds. This enables planes to fly nearer to each other in such conditions.
Defence company Lockheed Martin and Britain's air traffic operator Nats are behind the study.
With Manchester and Gatwick following Heathrow's lead, it will mean that 60 million customers per annum could benefit from the new system.
18 January 2017
Researchers at Cambridge University may have made a breakthrough in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, according to preliminary findings.
17 January 2017
Stansted Airport has made a bid to become Britain's next hub for long-haul travel, as passengers are promised seamless connection facilities and baggage transfer.
13 January 2017
Long-term goals such as travelling more and visiting new places have come above healthy eating and changing jobs in a list of the top New Year's resolutions.
14 January 2017
Some of the biggest airports in the UK have been forced to cancel flights as snow and blizzard conditions sweep parts of the country.
Stress could be as significant a risk factor for heart attacks and strokes as smoking, drinking and overeating, new research shows.
24 December 2016
Planned strikes by British Airways cabin crew on Christmas Day and Boxing Day have been suspended amid continuing industrial unrest ahead of the weekend break.
11 January 2017
A connection between diabetes and inflection in children could be a major breakthrough in developing a cure for type 1 diabetes, according to new research.
10 January 2017
A new trial aimed at tackling widespread loneliness among older people is successfully reducing isolation using community-based tactics, a report shows.
07 January 2017
People may be able to enjoy better brain health in later life by following a Mediterranean diet, research has suggested.
06 January 2017
Many Britons plan to cut down on the costs of their holidays in 2017, as part of their financial resolutions for the New Year.
05 January 2017
Holidaymakers have been encouraged to make the most of the fact 2017 boasts a pair of bank holiday weekends just two weeks apart.
04 January 2017
Holidaymakers are increasingly turning their attentions to trips which are all-inclusive, new research has suggested.