Looking ahead to the introduction of very light jets (VLJs) into its airspace over the next 10 years, Eurocontrol has established two initiatives to understand the effect of VLJs in the ATC system. The first is the VLJ Integration Platform (VIP), a group of air navigation service providers (ANSPs), manufacturers, regulators and operators with a meeting planned for October 14 and 15.
European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation
Moving Terrain (Booth No. 887) is showing off a new “enhancement” for its electronic flight bag (EFB) here at EBACE. Dubbed Blitzplan, the software upgrade allows pilots to use their Moving Terrain EFB to file a flight plan directly from their aircraft. The new software module allows a pilot to quickly generate a Eurocontrol-approved route, and that flight plan can then be activated from the EFB thanks to a built-in GSM phone.
To ensure that the increasing numbers of very light jets operating in European skies within the next five to 10 years are handled safely and efficiently, Eurocontrol’s European VLJs Integration Platform (VIP) is assessing solutions for integrating VLJs into the European air traffic system. Aside from the European Business Aviation Association, some VLJ manufacturers and operators participate in the VIP.
The European Commission’s director for air transport, Daniel Calleja, pledged more “proportionate” rules for business aviation in the future, acknowledging that this segment of air transport has “too often been neglected in the past.” Here at EBACE during yesterday’s opening session, other speakers included EBAA CEO Eric Mandemaker, who insisted on the association’s participation in the environmental debate, and his U.S.
During today’s EBACE opening session, European Commission director for air transport Daniel Calleja pledged more “proportionate” rules for business aviation in the future, acknowledging that this segment of air transport has “too often been neglected in the past.” According to Calleja, “The EC this year is launching key initiatives to make aviation more efficient, safer and environmentally sustainable.” He recognized the importance of general
Eurocontrol has dropped plans to reform its formula for en route charges for air traffic control services. On June 26, the agency’s top management overturned recommendations from its possible pricing mechanism task force (PPMTF) to proceed with a formula based on a fixed-cost factor that would not take into consideration aircraft size or journey length.
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.
After low-cost carriers, business aviation now ranks number two in Eurocontrol’s latest traffic statistics. “Not long ago, business aviation was not even on the radar screen of the agency and other decision makers,” European Business Aviation Association chief executive Eric Mandemaker told attendees at the general and business aviation annual forum held at the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation in Brussels recently.
According to Eurocontrol, by 2010, European operators will have ordered some 500 very light jets (VLJs) and about 300 of these will have been delivered by then, with most of them being destined for air-taxi services.
Eurocontrol’s upper-area control center at Maastricht in the Netherlands on November 3 activated its new operations facility, which includes an advanced operator input and display system (ODS). The new color display equipment replaced a monochrome ODS that had been installed in the early 1980s. New “windowing” techniques should allow controllers to get a better view of the en route air-traffic situation.