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The TADPOLE 2.0 Aircraft Landing System


The TADPOLE (Tactical Airfield-Deployable Precision Optical Landing Equipment) system was developed by the Test Flight Academy South Africa (TFASA) in partnership with Simera Africa. It is based on the same system requirements for Field Carrier Landing Practice during naval aviators' training. The system uses a Fresnel Lens Optical system's as employed on aircraft carriers.  


Using this system, a pilot can monitor and adjust his final approach angle by using a central "ball" light relative to two rows of datum lights. When the central "ball" is aligned with the datum lights, the aircraft is on the correct approach angle. The intensity of the lights is adjustable to allow for daytime or night-time operation. 


Enabled by the system's mobility and following appropriate training by a qualified training provider, the system can also be used as a rapid-deployment guidance aid at forwarding airfields. 

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  • Visibility Range: Up to 1nm (~1.8km) in daylight conditions, with adjustable intensity for low-light operation.

  • Azimuth Spread: 20° to both sides of the runway centerline.

  • Approach Angle: In-field adjustable between 2° and 5°.

  • Individual “ball” light vertical spread: 0.62°

  • The number of “ball“ lights: Landing system supplied with nine lights but can be adapted according to operational requirements.

  • Command operated wave-off lights to signal a mandatory go-around.

  • Landing system deployable in minutes.

  • The battery operates for 12 hours+

  • System fitted with a deep cycle battery and charging system.

  • Trailer licensed and road-worthy for South African roads.

  • The trailer has an integrated adjustable stabiliser and levelling system.

  • Trailer Dimensions (LxWxH): 8.72m x 2.32m x 2.76m

  • Trailer Weight: 3500


Optional Add-ons:

- An embedded camera to record aircraft approaches.
- Activation from aircraft VHF radio.

* Specifications may change due to continuous product development and improvement.

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