WAAS approaches outnumber ILS, more promised

November 13, 2008

WAAS approaches outnumber ILSThe FAA has announced that LPV (localizer performance with vertical navigation) approaches now outnumber ILS approaches at airports around the United States, and the agency has committed to publishing 500 such approaches each year until all qualified runways are served.

The 1,333 LPV approaches now in service at 833 airports are made possible by satellite-based GPS WAAS technology, which increases GPS accuracy and provides vertical guidance at low altitudes.

AOPA has been a leader in lobbying the FAA to transition to satellite-based navigation ever since Phil Boyer became president of the association, nearly 18 years ago. And since the 1990s, AOPA has urged the FAA to create a system that would give pilots the equivalent of an ILS at every airport, something WAAS is now making a reality.

“We’ve pushed hard for this, and our members are now seeing the fruits of those efforts as LPV approaches become available at many general aviation airports,” said Boyer. “Already, more than 35,000 aircraft are equipped for WAAS, and as more LPV approaches come online, we will see even more GA aircraft equip.”

For more information on WAAS, see AOPA online.