FERRONATS: a different way of managing air traffic

In 2011, the alliance of Ferrovial Servicios and NATS was awarded nine control towers in the Spanish airport system.

  • 27 M passengers / year
  • 443,000 annual movements

Ferrovial, through its Services division, and NATS, a leading British company in air traffic control services, joined forces in 2011 to create a company called FerroNATS. The origin of this alliance was based on the strengths of its component parts: on one hand, the knowledge of the airport sector and of the client provided by Ferrovial; on the other, NATS’ technical and human capabilities in air traffic management.

Once FerroNATS was incorporated, it was awarded nine of the 12 control towers liberalised in September 2011 by the Government: Sabadell, Cuatro Vientos, Vigo, Jerez, A Coruña, Valencia, Seville, Ibiza and Alicante. The transfer was gradual and was successfully completed, without having to record any incidents either during the transition or afterwards, once FerroNATS took responsibility for the activities.

Ever since, FerroNATS has improved all parameters that measure the air traffic control service and which furthermore are the fundamental pillars of our management:

  • SAFETY: FerroNATS has recorded an A+B incident ratio (the highest standard in the industry) of 1.8 per each million movements. The Spanish industry registers 24.
  • QUALITY: Our controllers have achieved punctuality ratios attributable to the tower of more than 98% in 2015. This translates to between 3 and 4 points above the industry average in Spain.
  • EFFICIENCY: From a financial point of view, we have reduced by 50% the cost of control service provision offered in the past in our towers. From the environmental point of view, we have achieved a reduction of 17% in aircraft taxiing time on the platform.

General Information

Management of control towers in the Spanish airport system
Passengers per year:
27 million
Annual movements

Related links

FerroNats website