Weekly review #177 - 30th November

Picture of Vincent Lambercy
Posted by Vincent Lambercy

First up, in airport news, O’Hare International Airport received federal sign-off for a $7.1 billion project to replace Terminal 2. Their new 'global terminal' will link domestic and international flights in one location. The project will start with two new satellite concourses, providing about 1.3 million square feet of gate and amenity space.


Next up, skeyes presented a new set of measures to support the transition to wind energy. This would include the removal of the protection zone around Charleroi airport, without compromising the safety and efficiency of air traffic. 


In other news, Adacel opened a new office in Tallinn, Estonia. This office will focus on developing and growing their virtual ATC business, while collaborating with Estonian Air Navigation Services to fully digitise Estonia’s regional airports by 2025.


And finally, DSNA selected SITA’s safety and compliance management solution, SITA Safety Cube, to advance operational safety in French airspace. The system will be deployed across five air route traffic control centers, 70 airports in mainland France, and six overseas airports.


ANSP news

Airports news

Market news

Context information

  • ICAO advocates for decarbonization of aviation at COP 27 - ICAO is fully cognizant of its global responsibilities towards the sustainable future of the international aviation sector, and of the planet. ICAO launched its Assistance, Capacity-building and Training for Sustainable Aviation Fuels (ACT-SAF) programme in June.

Reports and data

Research and innovation

  • The future of tower air navigation services - Think Research - An article discussing implications of Trajectory Based Operations (TBO) on airport tower operations.

  • Towards more efficient departures - NATS organised an open day to demonstrate their recent research results on integrated runway throughput and terminal efficiency - departure operations. The research activities were carried out within the context of the Integrated TMA, Airport and Runway Operations project (PJ.37-W3-ITARO), which is demonstrating on a large scale several airport solutions that have the potential to bring operational and environmental efficiencies.

  • Green deal and U-space Digital Sky Demonstrators officially get going - On 24 November, five new Digital Sky Demonstrators officially kicked off. With combined funding to the tune of EUR 45 million from the Connecting Europe Facility between now and 2025, the selected projects aim to accelerate the market uptake of SESAR Solutions for greener aviation and urban air mobility.


  • Charles Darwin University opens drone research and training centre in Australia’s Northern Territory - Unmanned airspace - Charles Darwin University has opened a new research and training centre for drones in Australia’s Northern Territory. The North Australia Centre for Autonomous Systems supports the university’s involvement in transformative technologies like drones, in the Northern Territory and the wider Asia Pacific region.

  • SHEPHERD project draws up a methodology to assess compliance with industry standards - Unmanned airspace - The SHEPHERD project has submitted its first deliverable which is now available for download on the EASA website. The main objective of this project is to build upon the work performed by the AW-Drones project – which identified standards that can potentially be used to demonstrate compliance to regulatory requirements in the drone sector – and complement its analysis by technically assessing the suitability of the standards identified by AW-Drones.

  • European Certiflight project to use Galileo data to provide accurate drone positioning - Unmanned airspace - The European Certiflight project has convened its first meeting, bringing together consortium members representing uncrewed traffic management providers, U-space service providers, drone operators, researchers and regulatory interests.

  • Israel to trial passenger carrying eVTOLs and cargo drones in controlled urban airspace - Unmanned airspace - The Israel Innovation Authority has announced the start of a 60 million INS second phase of the Israel’s National Drone Initiative, which will examine the use of large cargo and passenger-carrying heavy drone flying in controlled airspace.

  • Birth of an industry: Urban air mobility flights to start in 2023 - Unmanned airspace - LIFT is launching a new concept in personal aviation – anyone will be able to learn to fly its semi-autonomous eVTOL aircraft in less than an hour, and then solo pilot the single seat, ultralight vehicle – no pilot’s license required. Under FAA rules, flights are limited to uncongested flyover areas and uncontrolled airspace – so plans are in the works to develop LIFT vertiports along New York City’s many waterfront areas that provide access to the “Class G”, Visual Flight Rules (VFR) corridor that extends up to 1,300 feet around Manhattan. Unlike most eVTOL aircraft in development today, HEXA is already approved to fly under the FAA’s Part 103 rules, and no pilot’s license is required to fly for personal, non-commercial use.

  • BlueMark introduces Db120, a “small and powerful” Remote ID add-on - Unmanned airspace - Designed to provide a small, light and powerful transponder, the db120 is small – 48 x 38 x 28 mm – and weighs 25 grams. The transponder has a detection range up to 5 km.

  • SESAR RPAS and AI research projects publish material from final dissemination event - Unmanned airspace - Six SESAR JU Exploratory Research projects came together on 3-4 November in Rome, Italy, in a joint event to present the latest developments in promising aviation topics: Drones and Artificial Intelligence (AI). INVIRCAT, URClearED, and SAFELAND shared their research activities and results focused on the RPAS integration in the civil air space, while SafeOPS, MAHALO and ARTIMATION presented their ongoing research within the human – AI teaming in aviation framework.

  • TindAIR programme "completes deconfliction urban U-space trails in France" - Unmanned airspace - The SESAR joint undertaking reports that the U-space TindAIR project, coordinated by Innov’ATM, recently completed a series of very large-scale demonstrations in France on urban air mobility (UAM), with a focus on strategic deconfliction. The project has now concluded its demonstration activities, in addition to work on public engagement and acceptance of this future mode of transport and travel.

  • Thales HADO to support BVLOS project at LHR - Thales UK is a key player, is looking to answer at one of the world’s busiest international airports.’ HADO® (high-intensity autonomous drone operations) is an ambitious two-year project to deploy and operate a highly-automated 24/7 BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) drone operation at London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR).