Airport History

1937, March 19th
Luxembourg Government gets OK to build an airport at the site called ‘Findel’ outside Luxembourg City.
1940-45
2nd World War stops first efforts. Site with reinforced grass RWY is used by US Forces.
1946
A wooden barrack and stand are the first terminal and tower.
1946, October 18th
First meteo observation is recorded.
1946
1032 aircraft operations, 1457 passengers, 1 ton of freight.
1946-48
Construction of first solid terminal and technical building, without control tower.
1948, January 16th
First of 3 radio operators, later to be air traffic controllers, takes duty at Findel airport.
1948, March 25th
Luxembourg joins ICAO (International Civil Aviation Authority) which was established in December 1944.
1949
Construction of first aerodrome control tower. RWY measures 1160 x 40 m. Grass RWY still exists (500 x 100 m)
1950, February 15th
New control TWR goes operational. Main RWY has been increased to 2000 x 60 m (direction 240/060′). A secondary RWY is build (direction 200/020′, 1600 x 50 m)
1950
3602 aircraft operations, 6525 passengers, 18 tons of freight.
1951
Construction of main aircraft hangar and adjacent to it the fire brigade building and garages.
1950s
The different airport services (ATC, AIS, SIS, RAD + ELE, Police, Customs) are established under authority of airport commander.
1954, April 1st
24/24 hrs, 7/7 days operations start. T-VOR is introduced between the 2 RWY’s.
1957
Main RWY 24/06 is increased to 2830 x 60 m. ILS (Instrument Landing System) is introduced RWY 24.
1959, December 17th
Foundation of LUXEMBOURG GUILD OF AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLERS GLCCA.
1960, December 13th
Luxembourg is founding member and joins EUROCONTROL.
1960
14125 aircraft operations, 39689 passengers, 164 tons of freight.
1961
Foundation of IFATCA (International Federation OF ATC Associations). Luxembourg GUILD is founding member.
1963
First jet aircraft lands at Luxembourg airport.
1964
Airport services are reorganized under state employee conditions. ATC service counts 9 people including 2 supervisors.
1960s
Primary radar (PSR) is introduced for Approach Control. The approach controller still sits in the TWR.
1960s
Terminal building is adapted frequently to increasing traffic and passenger numbers.
1970
26035 aircraft operations, 471410 passengers, 2398 tons of freight.
1970
EUROCONTROL Institute starts operation at Kirchberg near the airport with courses for air navigation services.
1972-75
New Terminal BuildingNew bigger terminal building is constructed on the eastside of airport site.
1975
Luxembourg Airport Administration is created. It sits in the ‘old terminal’. It represents all airport services.
1978
A computer system for flight data is introduced. It is called Minilux.
1978
46256 aircraft operations, 698235 passengers, 38673 tons of freight.
1979-81
New primary radar (PSR) is introduced. Approach Control gets separate room inside terminal building.
1982
First major aircraft crash (IL62/10 casualties) at the airport. ATC is not involved in causes.
1984
Main RWY 24/06 is increased to its final 4000 x 60 m. ILS is upgraded to reduced visibility operations CAT II/III.
1985, November 9th
A terrorist bomb attack destroys ILS installations for RWY 24.
1986
ATC GUILD induces first industrial action of controllers in Luxembourg. Traffic is interrupted.
1989
New flight data processing (FDP) is introduced. Name: MARA.
1989-92
Construction of new TWR (35 m) and technical facilities (BTO), separated from ‘old terminal’. A new CARGO center is built on far east side of airport.
1993, April 17th
New TWR goes operational. Secondary radar (SSR) is introduced, coupled with upgraded FDP system for data correlation.
1993
65617 aircraft operations, 1106750 passengers, 175362 tons of freight.
1994-95
Old and first TWR plus ‘old terminal’ annexes are destroyed. ‘Old terminal’ main building is converted into administration building.
1999
FDP is upgraded to OLDI standard.
2000
85511 aircraft operations, 1669484 passengers (top), 499911 tons of freight.
2002, November 6th
Second major crash (F50/20 casualties) at the airport. Enquiry results are pending.
2002
Freight handling peaks at 578988 tons.
2003
Luxembourg ATC Guild commemorates 100 years of powered flight and 10 years operation in new TWR/BTO.
2008
New larger Terminal building opens. Mode-S Radar in operation and Luxembourg Airport Administration changes name to ‘Administration de la Navigation Aerienne’. Implementation of Safety and Quality management.
2009
New Cargolux maintenance hangar for B747 type aircraft
 2014
Freight handling at 705,371 tons, passengers at 2.47 million
 2015
 Luxembourg Airport has constructed a high-security zone far away from most airport activities in order to attract the business of transporting valuable goods such as art and jewels.