RVSM in Europe given provisional OK

 - May 19, 2008, 11:14 AM

Eurocontrol’s provisional council has given the go-ahead for the implementation of reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) in Europe starting next January 24, subject to final safety checks being satisfied next month. At a July 12 meeting in Brussels the council concluded that preparations in the agency’s 40 member states and aircraft compliance with onboard equipment requirements are sufficiently well advanced to allow it to confirm the implementation deadline. The new 1,000-ft separations will apply between FL 290 and FL 410, as it already does over the North Atlantic. RVSM is expected to generate initial increases in airspace capacity of some 20 percent and result in more fuel-efficient flight plans. Non-compliant aircraft will not be permitted to fly in RVSM airspace in Europe.