A Super Bowl Special Traffic Management Program (STMP) for the Houston area will be in effect January 28 through February 3, requiring all non-airline operators to obtain arrival and departure reservations for seven airports within the greater Houston area. Reservations can be obtained up to 72 hours before arrival and departure times.
Avionics and ATC » ATC
News, issues, personnel, equipment and developments about air traffic management.
Comments are due by January 23 on a proposal to increase the size of the Minneapolis Class B airspace, namely expanding its upper limit to 10,000 feet msl. Traffic growth, recent TCAS alerts and the advent of a new runway are the main factors behind the proposal. In the first half of last year there were 17 TCAS events reported in the airspace to be included in the proposed changes.
At precisely 0901 UTC on January 20, new operating rules for reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) are planned to take effect in the U.S., southern Canada, South America and Mexico. Depending on your particular situation, you may be anticipating or dreading the event.
Think night-vision goggles (NVGs) are just for police and EMS operators? You might be surprised to learn that changes to Part 91 and 135 due out this year could extend the technology to all of general aviation, opening possibilities for a wide range of operators, including business aircraft flight crews, to start using NVGs.
LAAS developer Honeywell and FAA LAAS program officials remain tight lipped about how the contract, awarded in April on the understanding that the system’s development was 80-percent complete, had by September reversed itself to becoming only 20-percent complete.
Few navigation systems have experienced the ups and downs of loran as they sought recognition. In December, a UK agency said the system is an essential back-up to GPS; the same month the FAA rejected it for the same purpose and an independent group of U.S. experts unanimously endorsed the system as a backup.
Although the FAA needs to hire 11,800 new controllers through Fiscal Year 2015 to replace retirees and other vacancies, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association noted the agency’s latest FAA Administrator’s Fact Book reports that the overall total number of controllers dropped from 14,227 at the end of FY2005 to 14,206 in FY2006.
Federal agencies on January 8 issued a notice asking for the public’s help to decide if there is a need to continue to operate or invest in the loran-C radio navigation system beyond September 30. They gave the public only 30 days–until February 7–to submit comments.
At the FAA’s two-day New Technology Workshop last month, the focus was sharply on the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NGATS). The key enablers to get there, according to Nick Sabatini, FAA associate administrator for aviation safety, will be “performance-based” navigation and Internet-like access to critical information such as near real-time weather.
The union representing air traffic controllers rejected the FAA’s request yesterday for federal mediation to help the agency reach a labor agreement with controllers, labeling it a “publicity stunt.” A 1998 contract expired on September 30, and the FAA suggests that little progress has been made since it and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association began negotiating on July 13.