Lighting & Visual Aids

Operations at airports without operating control towers require the highest degree of vigilance on the part of pilots to see and avoid aircraft while operating to or from such airports. Pilots should stay alert at all times, anticipate the unexpected, use the published CTAF frequency, and follow recommended airport advisory practices. These systems are intended to aid the pilot in locating the airport environment.

Precision Approach Path Indicators (PAPIs)

A PAPI is a system of lights that provide visual descent guidance information during the approach to a runway. This system provides a visual glide path that allows for safe obstruction clearance from the start of descent to the threshold. Both Runway 9 and Runway 27 will be equipped with 2-box PAPIs in the near future.

Runway End Identifier Lights

REILs are installed at many airfields to provide rapid and positive identification of the approach end of a particular runway. They are effective for: a. Identification of a runway surrounded by a preponderance of other lighting; b. Identification of a runway which lacks contrast with surrounding terrain; and c. Identification of a runway during reduced visibility. These lights consist of a pair of synchronized flashing lights located on each side of the runway threshold facing the approach area. Runway 9 is equipped with REILs and Runway 27 will be equipped with REILs in the near future.

Runway Edge Lights

Runway edge lights are used to outline the edges of runways during periods of darkness or restricted visibility conditions. These light systems are classified according to the intensity or brightness they are capable of producing: they are the High Intensity Runway Lights (HIRL), Medium Intensity Runway Lights (MIRL), and the Low Intensity Runway Lights (LIRL). Runway 9-27 at Horizon Lakes Airport is equipped with MIRLs. In addition, the Airport is equipped with runway threshold lights at each runway end.

Taxiway Edge Lights

Taxiway edge lights are used to outline the edges of taxiways. Similar to runway edge lights, these light systems are classified according to the intensity of light they are capable of producing. Limited quantities of MITLs have been installed at Horizon Lakes Airport to delineate the main taxiway.

Control of Airport Lighting Systems

The Horizon Lakes Airport does not have an operating control tower. Therefore, radio control of lighting is provided via airborne control of lights by keying the aircraft”s microphone. This eliminates the need for pilots to change frequencies to turn the lights on and allows a continuous listening watch on a single frequency. At Horizon Lakes Airport, the MIRLs can be activated using the designated Common Traffic Advisory Frequency (CTAF), 123.0. At this airport, the CTAF is a UNICOM frequency.

Pilot Control Lighting Operating Procedures

Runway Lights: The runway lights are controlled by a photo eye and via the CATF by “clicking” the microphone.

Radio Control System For Runway & Taxiway Lights

Key Mike: 5 times within 5 seconds
Function: Turns runway & taxiway lights on

NOTE: At any time in the sequence the pilot has the option of sending a signal to command the lighting. The solid state timer will continue to operate for 15 minutes after which it will cause the system to revert to the original “off” condition. The timer is reset by the receipt of any command at anytime, reinitiating the 15 minute “run” cycle. A photo eye keeps the runway and taxiway lights from operating during the day.

Airport (Rotating) Beacon

The airport beacon is used to aid pilots in locating the airport using a rotating green and white light. The ten (10) inch airport beacon at the Airport is located north of the runway. A photo eye controls the rotating beacon. It operates from dusk until dawn and may come on during periods of heavy overcast.

Wind Cone and Segmented Circle

The lighted wind cone and segmented circle is used to aid pilots in determining takeoff and landing information at an airport. Horizon Lakes Airport”s lighted wind cone and segmented circle is located to the south of Runway 9-27 and is in good working condition.