Do you remember the news a few weeks ago that London City airport was announced as the first major airport controlled by a remote digital tower?
NATS’ air traffic control centre in Swanwick, Hampshire use an ‘enhanced reality’ view supplied by a state-of-the-art 50m digital control tower. And, they've excelled themselves once again by making London City's digital tower all-weather ready.
Over many months, using recordings from the camera systems and data from the weather logs, NATS compiled case studies of all the met events the CAA and Met Office required. And then spent many hours studying these to assess the performance of the system and collate training material.
To make sure the images on the screens allowed them to do the met assurance observations and provide the ATC service, they spent a lot of time fine-tuning the image, and after a lot of work, gained approval for providing met and the ATC service using the digital tower!
Excellent work! And so exciting for the future of remote digital tower capabilities.
We're also very excited by the news of enhanced operational efficiency for regional airports becoming a reality.
For the last few years, a ‘simplified’ concept has been studied at EUROCONTROL through SESAR trials that would offer the benefits of A-CDM for regional airports, without the complexity of delivering the full picture, yet more developed than an advanced ATC-Tower.
Now more than ever in these tough times for the airport industry, further network integration of airports is a key success factor to prepare for future capacity management.
With the willingness of EUROCONTROL to support this integration, A-CDM for regional airports has become an essential solution to meet this objective and is actively being studied across the industry.
We can't wait to see how this develops!
- Enhanced operational efficiency for regional airports, about to become a reality? - There are parts of the A-CDM system that can offer a lot to regional airports because, besides the challenges mentioned above, regionals are no different from the big hubs in their attempts to run more efficient and cost-conscious airside operations.
- Always take the weather with you: making London City’s digital tower all-weather ready - NATS Blog - Being able to detect and report the weather is important for a tower controller, and this skill is even more valuable when controlling from a digital tower, where you are not actually where the weather is.
- NATS passes the Drone Assist baton to Altitude Angel - NATS - Altitude Angel and NATS have today announced that Altitude Angel is to launch an updated version of Drone Assist without the NATS brand.
- MIRROR – a new & innovative flight visualisation tool that helps operational stakeholders predict and mitigate delays - EUROCONTROL’s visualisation tool MIRROR creates a sequence of flights for each aircraft in the European aviation network, enabling operational stakeholders to predict delays more accurately, and take measures to mitigate their impact. This increases the efficiency and sustainability of flights and reduces the financial impact for airlines.
Reports and data
- EUROCONTROL Data Snapshot #10 - Our tenth EUROCONTROL Data Snapshot is here and our focus is on the overload on the use of Surveillance Radar.
- Pandemic spurs innovativ at DFS - DFS controlled 1.46 million flights last year – the lowest number ever and 56.2 percent fewer than in 2019 (3.3 million). Overall, take-offs and landings at the 16 designated international airports fell by 58.7 percent.
- Fraport Traffic Figures – April 2021: Passenger Traffic Still Low at Frankfurt Airport - Frankfurt’s strong cargo growth continues unabated – Passenger traffic at the Group airports worldwide remains well below pre-pandemic levels. With 15,486 takeoffs and landings, aircraft movements rose by 137.8 percent compared to April 2020.
Research and innovation
- Digitalisation in air traffic management – the Polish touch - Digitalisation is the best way to make air traffic management more efficient, believes Jarosław Piełunowicz, PANSA, who is leading research into a number of automation solutions to support controllers in their work, as part of the SESAR JU’s flagship projects, PROSA (PJ.10) and 4DSkyways (PJ18W2). In this article, he gives an update on the projects’ work and how they are supporting the move to a digital European sky.
UAV and UTM
- South Korea's defence research agency "develops drone obstacle avoidance technology" - Unmanned airspace - South Korea’s Agency for Defence Development has built an obstacle-avoidance system for drones and air taxis, reports ajudaily.com.
- Boeing proposes deeper partnerships with Switzerland on UAS, UTM and detect-and-avoid research - Unmanned airspace - Boeing is proposing 11 new unmanned aircraft system research projects with partners across Switzerland’s French, Italian and German-speaking regions. .
- The next priorities for EASA and FAA on U-space/UTM regulation – GUTMA Harmonized Skies webinar - Unmanned airspace - EASA and McKinsey will publish a joint study next week on societal acceptance of urban air mobility, according to Maria Algar Ruiz, Drone Programme Manager at EASA speaking at the first GUTMA 2021 Harmonized Skies webinar series, chaired by the Secretary-General, Koen De Vos.
- Latvian air navigation service provider LGS plans digital infrastructure to support drone operations - Unmanned airspace - In order to promote the controlled and safe use of unmanned aerial vehicles in Latvian airspace, LGS and domestic technology innovation company SIA Latvijas Mobilais Telefons have signed a memorandum of understanding on cooperation in research and development projects.
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