Point merge in extended terminal area

The present document reports on the study carried out in 2011 at EUROCONTROL in preparation for the live trials to be conducted in 2012 at Paris ACC with Paris CDG, Maastricht UAC and Brussels ACC (SJU project 05.06.07, exercise 427). The objective of the live trials will be to evaluate the use of Point Merge in ACC with AMAN for sequencing Northern arrival flows to Paris CDG.

The study was conducted jointly by DSNA (Paris ACC, Paris CDG and DTI) and EUROCONTROL (DSR) with the support of Belgocontrol. The objective was to refine and validate design, procedures and working methods, and to perform an initial benefit assessment. The study consisted of a series of small scale simulations iteratively focussing on NE then NW arrival sectors prior integrating approach sectors with an AMAN. It was conducted over five months (March to July 2011) and involved Paris ACC and Paris CDG controllers (27 in total).

Overall, the outcomes from the sessions were consistent and positive. The iterative process and continuity of participants allowed gradually testing and refining the new route structure and working method, with an efficient participation of the controllers that were fully familiarised and trained. The final design, consistent between NE and NW sectors, relies a Point Merge to sequence the main arrival flow (LFPG arrivals) and segregated routes for secondary arrival flows.

The main benefits reported by ACC controllers were confirmed by objective analysis: easiness, better task allocation in NE, reduction of workload and communication, and potential for safety and capacity increase. The main limitations were: compatibility with existing delivery conditions by upstream sectors in NE and potential interactions overflights in NW.

In Approach, the general feedback was positive with potentially an improvement of the situation compared to today due to better arrival traffic sequencing through better adherence to AMAN advisories in ACC.

In terms of flight efficiency, no significant impact on the overall distance and time flown was measured while aircraft are maintained at higher altitude and flying more predictable trajectories.


Point merge in extended terminal area