Brazil and SITA partner to improve air traffic control services in the South Atlantic airspace
Airlines using South Atlantic airspace under Brazilian Air Traffic Control will benefit from the introduction of real time airspace surveillance and data link communications between pilots and air traffic controllers, enabled by SITA’s AIRCOM satellite data link technology by mid-year.
Brazil’s Departamento de Controle do Espaço Aéreo (DECEA) is responsible for providing air traffic services for over 13 million square kilometers in the South Atlantic region, an area referred to as the Atlantico Flight Information Region (FIR). Air traffic services in this region are delivered by the Atlantico Area Control Center that is operated by the Third Integrated Center for Air Defense and Air Traffic Control (CINDACTA III), one of the four main air traffic control centers administrated by DECEA.
The Atlantico Area Control Center services will now be enhanced by the implementation of advanced and proven applications that will allow aircraft to periodically report their real-time position information and allow pilots and controllers to exchange data link messages over SITA’s satellite data link service. These applications are referred to as Automatic Dependant Surveillance-Contract (ADS-C) and Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) respectively and collectively as FANS 1/A.
The decision to introduce FANS 1/A services in the Atlantico FIR was first made in 2002 by DECEA and following this decision a prototype system was introduced. The DECEA consolidation of ADS CPDLC operations in the South Atlantic airspace is also in response to targets set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and its commitment with adjacent South Atlantic States who are collectively responsible for the delivery of air navigation services in the entire oceanic region.
“In Atlantico FIR, this service will benefit all national and foreign carriers operating in our airspace with ADS/CPDLC equipped aircraft. We are looking forward to start the operations and are delighted to work with SITA, our long term partner, on this important development for aviation in our region,” said Brig. Ramon Borges Cardoso, DECEA General Director.
ADS/CPDLC was introduced in the early 1990’s in the South Pacific region based on existing infrastructure and aircraft capabilities, underpinned by the newly available Inmarsat Aeronautical Mobile Satellite System (AMSS) and the US Global Positioning System (GPS). Since then States in all regions of the globe have either already, or will shortly be introducing ADS/CPDLC enabled services.
Aircraft with the ADS option transmit their identity, position, altitude and other information at periodic intervals via satellite to Air Traffic Management systems on the ground and this information can be visualized in a display and provide precise aircraft tracking information to air traffic controllers.
CPDLC replaces routine voice communications between crew and air traffic controllers with a form of communications similar to e-mail but over SITA’s secure global data communications infrastructure. CPDLC provides the ideal solution in oceanic and remote terrestrial regions where the only alternative is radio communications via High Frequency (HF) that tend to be very poor and very sensitive to atmospheric conditions.
Akhil Sharma, Director, Air Traffic Management, SITA, said: "SITA is delighted to be expanding its long standing partnership with DECEA as it continues its transition towards the implementation of technology as recommended by ICAO. The continued growth of air traffic in the South Atlantic region has been acknowledged by all South Atlantic States and SITA is committed to working with ICAO, IATA and the States in promoting the introduction of cost-effective technology that has the potential to realize immediate safety, efficiency and operational benefits to the States air navigation service providers and airspace users alike”.
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