Amazing video shows the UK’s daily air traffic

The National Air Traffic Services has detailed a single day's worth of flights over the UK

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The Independent Online

A ‘data visualisation’ video shows 7,000 flights over the UK’s skies on just one day, showing how Britain’s airspace is one of the busiest and most complex in the world.

The video was created by National Air Traffic Services (NATS) and was created to help visualise the sheer breadth and depth of UK aviation.

It begins with a steady stream of traffic approaching the UK from the Atlantic in the early hours of the morning as flights head into airports such as Glasgow, Manchester and London. Later on in the morning, the traffic begins to come in from Europe just as the first waves of departures start to head out from the UK.

The video zooms into London and shows amazing swirls of traffic above the airports of Heathrow, Stansted, Gatwick, Luton and London City, showcasing the complexity of the operation the NATS has to undertake on a daily basis. This shows the strategic holding stacks around London, when aircraft in flight have to be delayed while remaining within a specified airspace. 3,500 flights every day go into and out of the capital.

The video also shows examples of military training off the east coast of England and near to North Wales as well as helicopter tracks around Aberdeen as people and supplies are moved to and from the North Sea oil and gas rigs. Aberdeen is the world's busiest heliport.

According to NATS, they manage around 2.2 million movements every year. The average is for around 6,00 flights per day, although it can peak to over 8,000 on some occasions.

Matt Mills, NATS Head of Digital Communications, said: "We wanted to now take people on a deeper journey into what makes UK airspace work and some of its important features.

"Airspace might be the invisible infrastructure, but it is every bit as important as the airports and runways on the ground."

Video courtesy of National Air Traffic Services (NATS).