A snapshot of some recent, current and forthcoming activities - Spring, 2008

Fast-time simulation of Point Merge indicates significant improvements

 
A new technique, Point Merge, for merging aircraft without vectoring in terminal control areas (TMA) was modelled and used in fast-time simulations of four traffic streams arriving at a single runway. Compared with vectoring, Point Merge showed reductions in the TMA of about 40% in the number of instructions given to pilots, 30% in controller workload and 10% in fuel consumption.
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4D trajectory management: an initial controller perspective

A real-time simulation, held in March 2007, investigated 4D trajectory management in an en-route environment. Allowing aircraft to adhere to their preferred 4D trajectories enhanced flight time predictability, but impacted controllers’ tasks. The findings from this simulation and a cockpit simulation held in December 2007 will be used to help refine the 4D trajectory management concept in the context of SESAR.
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Validating the interoperability of Ground-Based Augmentation Systems (GBAS)

GBAS systems from different manufacturers are now entering the market, all produced to the same standards, but with potential differences in the interpretation of those standards. The EEC has helped set up a flying test bed and has been conducting an evaluation programme since 2005. Tests with all key ground installations in Europe have been performed with avionics systems of US, European and Russian origin. Up to now, no significant interoperability issues have been uncovered, although several clarifications have been proposed to the standards.
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ASAS Now! The Final ASAS Thematic Network Seminar, Paris, April 14th and 15th

 
The seminar will explain how some ASAS applications are being used now. It will describe how ASAS applications are included in the global ATM concepts, and in the SESAR and NextGen ATM programmes. It will explain the potential of the high capability level applications, in particular for airborne separation and self separation. And it will explain how ASAS can enhance safety on the airport surface.
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Training Institute and Experimental Centre join forces to focus on SESAR

 
Aiming to maximise and enhance EUROCONTROL’s ATM training, the Institute of Air Navigation Services (IANS) has joined forces with its Co-operative Network Design (CND) partner, the Experimental Centre, to deliver a special, modified ‘Towards a Future European ATM System’ course, which will be presented at the Experimental Centre in April. Concentrating on the SESAR programme, this joint venture will enable participants to learn about and see the validation work going on in support of this important programme.
Some places are still available.
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How do politicians develop air transport policy in Europe?

High level decisions regarding air transport are made at a political level where the technical and operational issues are put in a broader perspective. Exploring how air transport has been addressed in Europe, it was found that:
  • At a national level, the political decision making process on air transport is made difficult by the fact that it is distributed amongst many bodies; for this reason governments sometimes prefer to follow European initiatives;
  • The European institutions, and in particular the European parliament, have extended their competence to air transport and are progressively reshaping its evolution.
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Collating airport annoyance knowledge for the development of shared indicators

Airports have been identified as one of the bottlenecks restricting the growth of air transport. Airport expansion is sometimes delayed or even stopped because of strong resistance from surrounding communities, who see it as the cause of various kinds of annoyance such as noise and degradation of local air quality. Understanding the factors which contribute to this resistance and how new shared indicators can be developed can help to improve the relationship between airports and their neighbouring communities.
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A multi-model process for managing project complexity

In collaboration with AIRBUS, a model-centric process has been developed to ease the management of large projects involving many stakeholders. This process, supported by a tool (Multi-Model Editor), allows better communication among teams in projects where there is an ever-increasing volume and complexity of required knowledge. Corroborated by initial feedback from various projects, this approach allows multiple and consistent views of large systems to be built, so recovering control of their development, extension and maintenance. This process is being used in the centre's Medium Term Validation programme, in particular on the European Commission Episode 3 project, to develop the SESAR information model.
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Air traffic control speech corpus online

The ATCOSIM Air Traffic Control Simulation Speech corpus is a speech database of air traffic control (ATC) operator speech. ATCOSIM is a valuable contribution to ATC-related speech corpora: it consists of ten hours of speech data, which were recorded during ATC real-time simulations. The database includes transcriptions and additional information on speakers and recording sessions. Possible applications of the corpus include ATC language studies, speech recognition and speaker identification.
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External innovation projects reviewed

The 6th Innovative Research Workshop in December at the EEC was the occasion for the current CARE–INO (Cooperative Actions of R&D in EUROCONTROL) projects to present the progress achieved in the first year of their work The spirit of CARE-INO is to open the floor to external bodies such as universities, R&D centres, and industrial laboratories to propose projects aimed at developing innovative ideas, be they new or emerging technologies applied to ATM, or new ATM concepts, or a combination of both. The EUROCONTROL Innovative Research Advisory Board (IRAB), composed mainly of external experts, approved the continuation of five projects, with some being given guidelines for re-orientation, and accepted an additional one-year project.
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Contract-based Air Transportation System (CATS) project launched

 
The European Commission Contract-based Air Transportation System (CATS) project was launched on 6 November, 2007. The project will further develop and assess an innovative operational concept known as the “Contract of Objectives”, which, together with the SESAR Business Trajectory can, it is believed, increase efficiency and synergy between all ATM actors.
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New book on European Air Traffic Management

  
Written by authors from universities, industry, the European Commission and EUROCONTROL, a new book, "European Air Traffic Management: Principles, Practice and Research", seeks to link eight ATM themes in a practical, accessible and insightful way (and also includes a detailed compilation of ATM data resources).
  HTML Publisher's web page n.b. this book may also be obtained from other sources

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