At the Danish Air Ambulance base in Billund, satellite navigation is serving as a true lifesaver in the sky.
The air ambulance service, which is operated by the Norwegian Air Ambulance in Denmark, is among the first to use a new European satellite system, EGNOS, which makes it safer to fly in low visibility.
Johannes Traberg Christiansen, project manager at Danish Air Ambulance, says that bad weather is a big issue, and that they have a lot of rainy days, a lot of days of fog, mists, and low cloud ceiling.
Before the service started using EGNOS, around 10 per cent of missions had to be cancelled as a result of bad weather and there were 300 incidents per year in Denmark alone.
EGNOS provides accurate positioning, vertical as well as horizontal, so that the pilot can rely more on the instruments and less on the visual clues. This makes it less of a problem in the event that the ground is obscured by clouds or fog.