Airline communications provider Sita is supporting the launch of datalink ATC service in Indonesian airspace. The Geneva-based company has an agreement with Indonesia’s air navigation service provider (ANSP) to provide an air-to-ground datalink infrastructure that will enable pilots and controllers to communicate in the Jakarta flight information region (FIR). The system is currently undergoing operational evaluation.
Aircraft equipped with future air navigation system (Fans) avionics will be able to access the system for applications such as automatic dependent surveillance and controller-pilot datalink communications (ADS/CPDLC) in place of traditional voice communications. Through ADS, which is a surveillance application, an aircraft automatically transmits position reports to a ground control station. Through CPDLC, pilots and controllers can communicate with each other using text messages for clearances, position reports and other instructions. The Sita system supports Fans-equipped airliners and can be upgraded to support VHF Digital Link Mode 2 communications, which will be required in European airspace for aircraft lacking a Fans exemption.
Under the terms of its agreement with Indonesia’s state-owned ANSP, Sita is providing an ADS/CPDLC work station located in the area control center next to Jakarta Soekarno-Hatta International Airport; a datalink server; and an ADS/CPDLC test system. In January, the Indonesian government combined the air navigation services functions of two state-owned airport corporations into a single public corporation called Perum Indonesian Flight Navigation Service, a nationwide ANSP.
Sita provides similar data services to other ANSPs in the Asia-Pacific region, including organizations serving Singapore, Malaysia, Myanmar, India, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, the Philippines, Australia and Fiji. The company already supports datalink communications in the Ujung Pandang FIR covering the eastern region of Indonesia. It said a Fans trial was conducted in the Jakarta FIR several years ago but the system was not placed into operational service.
“Over the last five years, the Indonesian domestic market for air travel has nearly doubled as airlines have expanded and low-cost airlines have started up,” said Katrina Korzenowski, Sita Asia Pacific head of aircraft services. “With growth in Indonesia and throughout the Asia-Pacific region, voice communication will become increasingly congested. That’s why the new datalink services are so important.”