The Upper Cumberland Regional Airport has saved some money after receiving a donated non-directional beacon (NDB).
Airport Manager Dean Selby said the important piece of navigational equipment came from an airport in Colorado.
“Our NDB is close to 25 or 30-year-old. It’s an old generational one,” Selby said. “They’re decommissioning one in Sterling, Colorado. They gave it to us if I would come out, decommission it, do the paper work, and deinstall the tower. It’s only a few years old.”
Selby said the NDB uses a radio frequency to guide pilots to the airport’s location.
“It’s an AM transmitter, essentially, that basically sends out this signal in all directions that says, ‘Here I am’, Selby said. “So, as you’re flying along in an aircraft with a piece of equipment called an automatic directional finder, it points straight at that station. It’s part of our instrument landing system. It’s the initial approach fix, so they have to fly over that to begin the approach.”
Selby said the cost for a new NDB would be in the six figures, but the airport will end up spending an estimated $4,000 to install the donated NDB.