Airspace delegation solution passes maturity tests with flying colours

Nov. 15, 2021

Partners in the SESAR 2020 Project PJ.10-W2 PROSA have confirmed the cost-efficiency gains offered by a solution to delegate ATM services within a virtual centre environment.  The validation made use of a pan-European, multi-vendor platform, demonstrating the feasibility of enabling Europe to move towards more interoperable, cost-efficient and flexible air traffic service provision.

The solution (PJ.10-W2-Solution 93 - Delegation of airspace between ATSUs using virtual centre concept) was validated using two operational use cases (night and contingency operations) in two different portions of the airspace managed by control centres in Karlsruhe (Germany) and Zurich (Switzerland).

Led by the German air navigation service provider, DFS, the exercise made use of a distributed pan-European infrastructure prototypes from Indra, Frequentis and DFS. Operational experts from DFS, NATS and PANSA were involved in the validation, while ENAVassessed the impact on the controller working position (CWP), in relation to the air traffic controller performance, as well as safety issues.

The partners analysed the behaviour and views of air traffic controllers involved in the exercise and found that the solution was operationally feasible and acceptable. They also confirmed cost-efficiency gains related to air traffic controller productivity) for the delegation of ATM services provision at night.

The successful validations mean that the solution has now reached a V2 level of maturity (technical level of readiness TRL4) and is ready to undergo the next round of testing with the view to making it available for industrialisation (i.e. V3). With this in mind, the solution will be further tested in 2022 in a series of exercises* as part of the PROSA project but also in conjunction with activities planned in the SESAR JU’s flagship project on virtual centres (PJ.32). The tests are expected to shed further light on the benefits that this solution can offer, while also paving the way towards a more resilient and scalable ATM system at European level.

About SESAR Horizon 2020 PJ.10-W2 PROSA

The project aims at providing air traffic controllers with more automated tools, thereby allowing them to concentrate on situations where human intervention is crucial. The project aims to not only improve current conflict detection tools, but also develop new tools supporting the air traffic controller with resolution advisory and monitoring of flight trajectory. The project will address new ways of working together, taking into account developments such as drones.


* EXE2 (led by ENAIRE), EXE3 (led by SKYGUIDE), EXE4 (led by ENAV), EXE5 (led by COOPANS), EXE6 (led by PANSA)


This project has received funding from the SESAR Joint Undertaking under the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 874463