Air traffic controllers
DFS air traffic controllers ensure that flights are conducted in a safe, orderly and expeditious manner. They make sure that there is always sufficient separation between aircraft. Air traffic controllers work in radar control centres and in control towers.
The air traffic controllers in control towers manage what happens on the apron, on the runways and in the surrounding airspace. These tower controllers
ensure the smooth conduct of traffic at the aerodrome. They coordinate the aircraft which are taxiing, taking off and landing by radiotelephony. They inform pilots about the departure procedures and issue take-off clearances. Tower controllers always have direct visual contact with the aircraft. At night and in conditions of low visibility, such as fog, they are supported by ground radar.
The air traffic controllers in the radar control
centres, on the other hand, only see aircraft as symbols on their radar screens. In total, DFS has four such centres: in Langen, Bremen, Munich and Karlsruhe. All pilots flying under instrument flight rules (IFR) are controlled by the air traffic controllers working in these control centres. Lower airspace, up to around 7,500 metres, is monitored from Langen, Bremen and Munich. The colleagues in Karlsruhe have an eye on upper airspace.