What is FIDO in Aviation? (Fog Investigation And Dispersal Operation)

Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation (FIDO) is a crucial process in aviation that aims to improve visibility during periods of heavy fog. This operation involves the use of specialized equipment and techniques to disperse fog and remove it from the vicinity of an airport or airfield. By doing so, FIDO helps to minimize disruption to air travel and ensure the safety of both aircraft and passengers.

FIDO was developed during World War II to address the significant operational challenges presented by foggy conditions. It was initially used by the Royal Air Force (RAF) in Britain, but its effectiveness and success led to its widespread adoption by airports around the world. Today, FIDO plays a vital role in aviation, particularly in areas prone to frequent fog, such as coastal regions and low-lying areas.

How Does Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation Work?

Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation primarily relies on the use of specialized equipment that generates heat and disperses fog particles. The most common method used in FIDO is the production of large amounts of heated air, which is then dispersed through a series of high-pressure pipes or burners located along the runway. These burners heat the air and create a column of warm air that rises and mixes with the colder foggy air.

The key objective of FIDO is to disperse the fog and improve horizontal visibility for aircraft attempting to take off or land. By introducing warm air into the foggy environment, the temperature differential between the warm air and the surrounding fog causes the fog particles to become suspended in the air or evaporate. This process significantly reduces the density of the fog, leading to improved visibility.

The Importance of Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation in Aviation

Fog can have a significant impact on aviation operations, leading to delays, cancellations, and potential safety risks. Reduced visibility caused by fog poses a challenge to pilots during takeoff, landing, and taxiing. Foggy conditions also affect air traffic control operations, as controllers have limited visibility over the runways and taxiways.

With the implementation of Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation, airports have a better chance of ensuring the continuity of flight operations, even under foggy conditions. FIDO helps to reduce the fog density, allowing pilots to maintain better visibility and make informed decisions during critical phases of flight. This improves safety for both commercial and private aircraft.

In addition to improving safety, FIDO also enhances efficiency in airport operations. With better visibility, the frequency and severity of flight delays and cancellations due to fog are minimized. Passengers experience reduced disruptions and have a smoother travel experience overall. Furthermore, FIDO contributes to the overall economic well-being of airports and the surrounding communities by enabling air travel to continue even in adverse weather conditions.

Examples of Successful Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation Implementation

Several airports around the world have successfully integrated Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation into their operations, yielding positive results. One notable example is London Heathrow Airport, which experiences frequent foggy conditions due to its location. Heathrow Airport implemented FIDO to mitigate the impact of fog on flight operations, resulting in reduced disruptions and improved safety.

Another successful implementation of FIDO can be found at San Francisco International Airport. The airport is situated in close proximity to the coast, making it vulnerable to the effects of fog. By incorporating FIDO into its operations, San Francisco International Airport has been able to minimize the impact of fog on flight schedules, ensuring the continuity of operations and providing a more reliable travel experience for passengers.

It is important to note that while Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation is highly effective in improving visibility during foggy conditions, there are limitations to its capabilities. Extremely dense and persistent fog may still pose challenges even with the implementation of FIDO. In such cases, airports may resort to other measures, such as altering flight schedules or diverting flights to alternate airports.


Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation (FIDO) is an essential process in aviation that helps improve visibility during periods of heavy fog. By dispersing fog and reducing its density, FIDO enables airports to continue operations and minimize disruption to air travel. The implementation of FIDO not only enhances safety but also improves efficiency and contributes to the overall economic well-being of airports and surrounding communities.

As weather conditions continue to present challenges to aviation, the importance of Fog Investigation and Dispersal Operation remains significant. Airports must continually invest in advanced technologies and techniques to combat the impact of fog and ensure the smooth functioning of air travel. FIDO serves as a critical tool in achieving these objectives and promoting the safety and efficiency of aviation operations.


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