Leonardo and ENAV, Italy’s air navigation service provider, have signed a letter of intent aimed at modernizing helicopter airspace with advanced navigation technologies, including the implementation of more performance-based navigation (PBN). The agreement is expected to help facilitate the implementation of urban air mobility in Italy and internationally.
Leonardo and ENAV noted that satellite-based PBN has the potential to contribute to air space optimization, greater safety, and more precision and accuracy. It also could reduce noise and carbon emissions via the use of more dedicated and efficient routes.
The partners will offer public and private sector helicopter operators advanced navigation products and services while participating in the modernization of relevant infrastructures. “Today, the air navigation infrastructures, particularly procedures and air space development, are designed mainly to support fixed-wing aircraft flight operations, limiting rotary-wing aircraft’s potential and versatility. Helicopters inherently feature great flexibility,” they added.
Leonardo CEO Alessandro Profumo said the agreement confirms Leonardo’s commitment to “contribute to Italy’s growth and competitiveness by strengthening a critical infrastructure like our sky, as well as the systems and rules regulating its use. We do this by introducing innovation, digitalization, and procedures, which will come closer and closer to the future of ‘urban air mobility’ scenarios.”