First up this week, the 1st of February marked the 50-day countdown to NATS' West Airspace Deployment. The culmination of over three years of planning, two concurrent airspace changes come into service on 23 March 2023. With support from a wide and varied range of aviation stakeholders, NATS are well on the way to delivering on the Airspace Modernisation Strategy (AMS), against a challenging backdrop for the industry. The project will transform the way UK airspace is structured above 7,000ft over southwest England and Wales, helping move towards the industry’s 2050 net zero target and modernising the route network to enable a simpler and safer future for air travel.
Next, planes heading to Orlando, Kansas City, Omaha, Reno and six airports in South Florida can now slide down from cruising altitude to final approach saving millions of gallons of fuel and reducing greenhouse gases. “We are investing across the entire system to provide passengers with the best travel experience. The era of choppy descents is coming to an end, providing a smoother landing and saving fuel in the process,” said Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen.
In other news, the public is invited to participate in a virtual meeting about a proposal to modify the airspace around Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) proposal expands the area where pilots interact with air traffic control and will not change existing flight paths. The airspace change improves the ability to manage the area’s complexity and volume of aviation activities.
Finally, IAA Chief Executive, Mr Peter Kearney has taken over as Chair of A6 Alliance from Mr. Ángel Luis Arias, Director General ENAIRE, the Spanish Air Navigation Service Provider, effective 1 January 2023. The A6 alliance includes the leading air navigation service providers (ANSP) who are responsible for the safe management of more than 80% of air traffic in Europe and approximately 70% of R&D investments in the future European air traffic management infrastructure.
- FAA Adds Fuel-Saving Arrival Routes for 11 Airports - Planes heading to Orlando, Kansas City, Omaha, Reno and six airports in South Florida can now slide down from cruising altitude to final approach saving millions of gallons of fuel and reducing greenhouse gases.
- Certification project of the air navigation services provider in the upper airspace in the central American region - The workshop called “ATM/ANS Service Provider Certification” was held in Guatemala City; within the framework of the EU LAC APP II Cooperation Project, and with the support of EASA for the Certification Project of the ANSP in the Upper Airspace of the Central American Region. It was given by EASA experts, with the assistance of the Technical Deputy Directors of the Honduran Civil Aeronautics Agency of Honduras and the CAA of El Salvador, as well as Experts from the six COCESNA Member States and ACSA staff.
- West Airspace Deployment: 50 Days To Go - NATS Blog - The project will transform the way UK airspace is structured above 7,000ft over southwest England and Wales, helping us towards the industry’s 2050 net zero target and modernising the route network to enable a simpler and safer future for air travel.
- FAA Seeks Public Input on San Juan Airspace - The public is invited to participate in a virtual meeting about a proposal to modify the airspace around Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The FAA's proposal expands the area where pilots interact with air traffic control and will not change existing flight paths. The airspace change improves the ability to manage the area’s complexity and volume of aviation activities.
- FAA Seeks Public Input on Runway Project Proposal at Raleigh-Durham Airport - The FAA and the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority invite the public to discuss the draft Environmental Assessment for a proposed runway replacement project at Raleigh-Durham International Airport. The Airport Authority proposes relocating Runway 5L/23R and then converting the existing runway to a taxiway to meet existing and forecasted aviation demands. The draft EA will evaluate the potential environmental effects of the proposed project.
- Transoft Solutions Acquires Anexea to Strengthen Spain and Latin America Aviation Operations - Transoft Solutions, developers of productivity-enhancing software and services for aviation, civil transportation, and traffic safety industries, announced the acquisition of Anexea, a privately-owned company located in Madrid, Spain.
- IAA Chief Executive, Peter Kearney, takes over chair of the A6 Alliance for 2023 - IAA Chief Executive, Mr Peter Kearney has taken over as Chair of A6 Alliance from Mr. Ángel Luis Arias, Director General ENAIRE, the Spanish Air Navigation Service Provider, effective 1 January 2023.
- State of aviation safety in Finland is good – international conflicts require changes to international flight routes - Overall, the year 2022 was safe in Finnish commercial air transport. No accidents took place. The number of serious incidents was approximately the same as in previous years. Most of the incidents were once again caused by aircraft proximity with drones. Disruptions in aircraft satellite navigation systems were observed more frequently than in 2021.
- Government joins industry to fund programme that inspires state school students to explore careers in aviation and aerospace - The Department for Transport joins Boeing, British Airways, and the William Gibbs Trust to fund a programme that aims to inspire, enable, and support state school students into aviation, aerospace, and space.
- SESAR young scientists offer alternative look at innovation in air traffic management - Patience, persistence and good mentorship are a winning combination for a career in ATM research, according to Marie-Christine Nevir and Omar Garcia Crespillo, who pursued innovative and forward-looking concepts to secure the top prizes in the 2022 SESAR Young Scientist Award, the joint undertaking’s annual young talent competition. The award recognises the potential of young researchers to formulate fresh ideas and solutions to challenges in ATM and aviation, while opening up opportunities for further career progression.
Research and innovation
- EASA paves the way for technology evolution in ATM - EASA has proposed to streamline the attestation of ATM/ANS equipment, paving the way for a much-needed technological evolution of the Air Traffic Management landscape.
- How ATC tools can help provide conflict-free air traffic - SESAR JU - SESAR partner, NATS, is working with European partners in the 4DSkyways project to help predict aircraft flight paths more reliably, which will in turn improve the accuracy of potential conflicts as they are displayed to ATCOs and help airlines adopt the best available routing to maximise environmental benefit and reduce costs. In this blog, Sarah Dow, Advanced Tools & Concepts Lead, describes research into ways to improve the accuracy of flight trajectory prediction and offer enhancements in the detection and resolution of potential aircraft conflicts.
UAV and UTM
- GSMA and GUTMA release "Interface for Data Exchange between MNOs and the UAS Ecosystem" - Global UTM Association - GMSA and GUTMA are proud to officially release the new document Interface for Data Exchange between MNOs and the UAS Ecosystem, two years after the first version of the paper. The document, which is the product of the Aerial Connectivity Joint Activity, aims at covering the use cases that emerged in these two years, through which mobile network operators provide more than just “connectivity coverage”.
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