Byron Bay Airport

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RNP – Required Navigation Performance

Required Navigation Performance is now in operation at Ballina Byron Gateway Airport.

RNP – Required Navigation Performance – Overview

RNP – Required Navigation Performance – Factsheet

Ballina Byron Gateway Airport has commissioned Airservices to install Smart Tracking ( The Airport provides the main gateway to Byron Bay and is critical for the development of the region’s tourism industry.

Smart Tracking aircraft use satellite technology to fly with greater accuracy than those using conventional navigation means. The technology makes air travel safer, cleaner and more dependable. Smart Tracking will improve the reliability of aircraft landings and reduce inconvenience for passengers, which is one of Ballina Byron Gateway Airport’s priorities.

Currently pilots must be able to see the runway from an altitude of 660ft (approximately 200m) in order to make a landing at Ballina Byron Gateway Airport. This means that in inclement weather, pilots sometimes have to divert to another airport. With Smart Tracking, the altitude at which the runway must be seen will be just 350ft (approximately 107m), allowing more landings to take place in poor weather.

Airservices is developing new Smart Tracking arrival flight paths for both Runway 06 and Runway 24. The Smart Tracking final approach to Runway 06 is very similar to the current conventional final approach to that runway. However, it is possible that Smart Tracking, which is a precise navigation technology, will lead to flights being concentrated more along the centre of the flight path. The Smart Tracking final approach to Runway 24 has been designed so that it is mostly over water.

Therefore, residential areas that will be flown over by aircraft using Smart Tracking already experience aircraft overhead, including those that have taken off from Runway 24. Smart Tracking will not cause aircraft to fly any lower than they currently do over these residential areas. To view the Smart Tracking flight paths in Ballina visit (

Smart Tracking has been trialled around Australia since 2006 and has been successfully implemented at five airports around the country. Jetstar has committed to using Smart Tracking at Ballina Byron Gateway Airport. Over the next few years, other commercial airlines are expected to equip their aircraft and train their crews to use the system, so use of Smart Tracking will increase.

To let us know what you think about these plans, or to find out more information, please contact

Airservices Noise Complaint and Information Service:

Phone: 1800 802 584 (9.00am – 5.00pm AEDST)
Post: Noise Complaints and Information Service, PO Box 211, Mascot NSW 1460

You can also contact Ballina Byron Gateway Airport

Phone: 02 6681 1858 Post: Ballina Byron Gateway Airport, Ballina Shire Council, PO Box 450, Ballina NSW 2478

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