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The Bahamas Airports going solar

bahamasflying

Night-time travel to 16 Family Islands will soon be possible after a new solar powered lighting system is installed at the airports this October.


Some Family Island residents can now do-away with the old practice of using car lights to illuminate the runway as the new system includes taxiway edge and runway lights. Minister of Transport and Aviation Glenys Hanna-Martin announced Thursday that the use of solar lighting would place The Bahamas on the cutting edge of aviation lighting technology.


Mrs Hanna-Martin revealed that the ministry recently signed a $2,244,526 agreement with the leading provider of solar powered lights, Carmanah Technology Corporation, for the wireless controlled solar led lighting systems. Acting Permanent Secretary in the transport ministry, Lorraine Armbrister, told the Nassau Guardian that these lights are more suited to The Bahamas’ environment than conventional lighting.


“If there is a hurricane, it won’t wash out the lighting system,” said Mrs Armbrister. “The lights just need to be detached from the base and carried inside before a hurricane.”


The airports that have been identified for the new lighting system are Colonial Hill, Crooked Island and Spring Point, Acklins; Staniel Cay, Black Point and Farmer’s Cay, Exuma; Congo Town and Mangrove Cay, Andros; Deadman’s Cay, Long Island; Sandy Point and Moore’s Island, Abaco; New Bight, Cat Island; Port Nelson, Rum Cay; Duncan Town, Ragged Island; Great Inagua; Great Harbour Cay in the Berry Islands and South Bimini. The Minister said these airports were selected first because of the “frequent medical evacuations that have been required over the years.” The remaining 13 government airports are expected to receive the lighting systems by July 2007.


The solar lights are already used at both the Grand Bahama and Lynden Pindling international airports as backup systems, but will be the primary and permanent source of runway lighting at the Family Island airports.


The lights will be installed practically simultaneously throughout the islands and will be virtually maintenance free. The level of aircraft activity is expected to be increased once the lighting systems are in place.



Source: The NASSAU GUARDIAN




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