• SJU reference # PJ.06-02 /Release 2019
  • Stakeholders
  • Benefits Environment
  • Status Discontinued

Flying more direct routes across Europe provides airspace users with the opportunity to improve fuel efficiency, optimise flight time between departure and arrival airports, and improve predictability and operational efficiency. Already available across large areas of Europe’s upper airspace, SESAR is looking at ways of making free routing available in lower en-route airspace to extend the benefits beyond the Commission’s mandated upper airspace.

The candidate solution assumes that, even if below 31,000 feet there is a potentially higher variability of traffic demand,  the implementation of free routing below 31,000 feet will not decrease the throughput at network level or lead to an increase in controller workload – and consequently to a reduction in capacity.

The candidate solution takes into consideration scheduled and unscheduled airline and cargo traffic climbing or descending, and further irregular but dense number of small piston or turbine aircrafts belonging to general and business aviation and rotorcraft. It relies on an advanced planning functions that use information from the airspace user plan (AUP) and updated use plan (UUP) published daily; as well as other sources, and as a result of accessing aircraft performance data, produces the most direct and efficient flight profile. The candidate solution also covers the development and optimisation of flight planning algorithms concerning dynamic changes in AUPs.


  • Enhanced predictability
  • Reduced fuel consumption and emissions