ATNS SIGNS CONTRACT FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF AN ADVANCED AIR TRAFFIC FLOW MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
Maastricht, 13th February 2007 – ATNS CEO, Wrenelle Stander and representatives of Thales Air Systems last week signed a contract that will see the development of an advanced air traffic flow management system.
The need for a central flow management unit (CFMU) was recognized by ATNS several years ago and as a result of this the central airspace management unit (CAMU) was born. The CAMU has since then carried out strategic, pre tactical and tactical flow management whilst also managing the flexible use of airspace and the successful implementation of slot allocations. Existing international air traffic flow management best practices were researched and it was found that further specific development was required for the unique South African environment. Hence it was decided to take the best ATFM concepts and to integrate them into the existing SAAATS Eurocat Air Traffic Management System. Following a five year concept development study and international tender, the contract has been awarded to Thales Air Systems, who have teamed with Metron Aviation for the realisation of this complex system.
This system is unique in that it is the first time that an ATFM system of this type will be fully integrated into an advanced ATM system enabling automated strategic, pre tactical and tactical ATFM to be carried out. As a highly integrated system it will have collaborative decision making capabilities which will ensure that the reasonable requirements of air traffic control, aircraft operators, military aviation and airport operators are considered by the CAMU before an airspace plan is finalized. This process also ensures that the South African airspace and airport facilities are optimally used and aircraft trajectories are calculated accommodating the aircraft operator’s requirements.
The software design and manufacture is expected to take two years to complete. This system will be instrumental in coordinating traffic on a national and regional level allowing ATNS to create the capacity to better cope with traffic growth projected at 5.4% per annum including the increased demands expected during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.