Skip to main content

Initial Trajectory Information Sharing

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - PJ31 DIGITS (Initial Trajectory Information Sharing)

Reporting period: 2019-01-01 to 2019-12-31

"DIGITS stands for ""Demonstration of air traffic management Improvements Generated by Initial Trajectory Sharing"" and contributes to reinforcing the “Enabling Aviation Infrastructure” key feature of the Single European Sky Air Traffic Management (ATM) Research (SESAR) 2020 program by assessing the benefits for ATM when the aircraft shares its complete predicted four-dimensional trajectory (3D + time), the so-called Extended Projected Profile (EPP), with Air Traffic Control services. DIGITS will also allow to fine tune the requirements for integration of EPP in ground systems and to understand the impact of flight crews’ practices on the downlinked data.
DIGITS started in September 2016 and covers the developments of Air Traffic Service Baseline 2 (ATS-B2)avionics and ANSP controller support tools for air-ground trajectory synchronization. It consists of a set of tightly coordinated development and demonstration actions by key airborne and ground stakeholders in Europe, performed in a close to operational environment and under fully representative operational conditions:
• for Maastricht Upper Area Control (MUAC), implemented in the operational system
• for the Air Navigation Service Providers of Germany (DFS), Italy (ENAV) and United Kingdom (NATS), integrated in their test platforms.

DIGITS-AU is the Airspace User complement project, with the participation of Air France, British Airways, EasyJet, Iberia, Novair and Wizz Air. It started in Jan-2018 and targets to upgrade up to 100 A320 family aircraft with enhanced communication and surveillance capability compliant with the new ATS-B2 standard through the Airbus Future Air Navigation System avionics (FANS C). By end 2019, about 5000 successful DIGITS flights were achieved involving 29 aircraft.

In the frame of DIGITS, MUAC has adapted its operational system while DFS, ENAV and NATS have built up shadow-mode system platforms capable of receiving and processing ADS-C data including EPP. These platforms will display the shared trajectory data to controllers on their working positions and/or explore the integration of the shared data into the Flight Data Processing Systems for the enhancement of the ground Trajectory Prediction. A system at Eurocontrol Experimental Centre (EEC) collects ADS-C data (with complete EPP trajectories) for off-line data access and online distribution."
- 11 Flights “PEGASE+” types performed
- Simulators coupling sessions between EUROCONTROL EEC and partners
- Simulators coupling sessions between Airbus and partners
- Coupling sessions between Airbus Development A/C and EEC
- MUAC has contracted the upgrade of their operational DLFEP and FDPS and developments started in December 2017
- MUAC has defined the requirements baseline for their simulators and CWP, which are internal developments.
- DFS, Indra, MUAC and NATS have defined the requirements for computation and display of ADS-C route discrepancy monitoring
- ATN B2 ground data-link platform established and initial software installation and testing complete at EEC, NATS and DFS, including Airtel DLFEP software
- Indra has developed the specific ATN-B2 ground data link functionality for DFS, MUAC and NATS Platforms
- Indra started the specific development to update MUAC FDPS
- Indra with MUAC has provided a specific IBP platform (HW & Tools) at Indra premises to support the Factory test for MUAC platform
- Indra has provided a specific IBP platforms (HW & Tools) at Indra premises to support the factory test for DFS and NATS platforms
- The PJ31 Amendment has been signed
- Coupling session between Airbus and EEC (LFPYEDTA) on the 26/04/2017, 16/05/2017 and 21/06/2017
- Coupling session (2nd part) between Airbus and DFS successfully performed the 09/01/2018
- Development A/C (on ground) coupling between EEC and Airbus successfully performed the 10/01/2018
- Coupling session between Airbus and NATS successfully performed the 23/01/2018
- Test of the “Test CM server“(address TESTEDGG) has been successfully performed the 24/25-Apr-018.
- Coupling with MUAC “Test CM server“(address TESTEDGG) has been successfully performed the 19 06 2018
- Coupling with MUAC: ATN B2 tests (Logon, CPDLC, ADS-C) has been successfully performed the 12 07 2018
- Coupling with MUAC, EEC (LFPYEDTA) support: ATN B2 tests (Logon, CPDLC, ADS-C) on the 17/07/2018
- Coupling with MUAC: ATN B2 tests (Logon, CPDLC, ADS-C) has been successfully performed the 25 07 2018
- Coupling with DFS: ATN B2 tests has been successfully performed the 29 08 2018
- Coupling with MUAC: ATN B2 tests (Logon, CPDLC, ADS-C) has been successfully performed the 20 11 2018
- Coupling with MUAC : ATN B2 tests (Logon, CPDLC, ADS-C) has been successfully performed the 06 12 2018
- Coupling with DFS (ADS-C Abort and CPDLC blocking) has been successfully performed the 13 12 2018
- First flight with Development A/C and ECC coupling successfully performed in 02/02/2018
- Coupling with MUAC on the 22/01/2019
- Coupling with DFS and Eurocontrol Bretigny (LFPYADSC) on the 22/01/2019
- Coupling with MUAC on the 05/02/2019, 28/02/2019 and 04/03/2019
- Coupling with ENAV on the 19/08/2019 and the 26/08/2019

On the 14th of February 2019: Interoperability Flight with DFS, NATS, EEC and MUAC: Toulouse - Hamburg - Broughton - Toulouse
1-Aug-2019: Interoperability Flight with ENAV and EEC: from Toulouse into Italian airspace
Eurocontrol and Airbus have collaborated to identify issues related to either data link network, ATC ground system, avionic systems or Aircraft operations
MUAC and Airbus have worked together to monitor DIGITS operations and identify and explain any unexpected behavior
Eurocontrol has widely shared ADS-C reports of DIGITS fleet which were used by partners for Data Analysis
By the end of the project, EPP data of about twenty thousand revenue flights shall be collected, which are analysed to proof the various operational benefit cases.
In parallel, other SESAR projects work to integrate EPP in air traffic controllers’ support tools.
The overall goal is to optimise the aircraft’s trajectory and make traffic flows more fluid to ultimately improve efficiency for airspace users and air navigation service providers.