When you think about how many people are jetting all over the country for business, pleasure or whatever, it’s pretty mind boggling. And while we’re always thinking about what that means for us from a travel/customs/packing perspective, imagine the infrastructure that it takes to get people from one end of the country to the other, and across the world.
These facilities are responsible for controlling aircraft en route in a particular volume of airspace (a Flight Information Region) at high altitudes between airport approaches and departures, while the towers just control the airport’s airspace.
These are radar installations that are within 30-50 nautical miles of an airport that work with towers and Route Traffic to direct planes.
For inter-airport, as well as across various airports – dedicated lines so that airports don’t need to rely on outside telecommunications utilities.
Essentially the engineers and tech support of the Airport.
So far, it’s been 9 years and counting without a fatal accident for a US carrier.