Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


ASSTAR — Result In Brief

Project ID: 516140
Funded under: FP6-AEROSPACE
Country: France

Assisting airborne operations

Air Traffic Management (ATM) plays an essential role in efforts to enhance capacity, efficiency and safety. EU-funded researchers are developing novel Global Positioning System (GPS)-like systems for onboard, in-flight use by crew to support this role.
Assisting airborne operations
European researchers initiated the ‘Advanced safe separation technologies and algorithms’ (Asstar) project to evaluate two specific types of Airborne Separation Assistance Systems (ASAS), namely those dealing with radar airspace and those for non-radar airspace.

Scientists focused on separation during sequencing and merging and during crossing and passing.

Making these processes safer and more efficient could enable less separation among aircraft and thus enhanced capacity of the skies. It could also enable shorter flight paths, increasing efficiency and reducing costs.

Scientists sought to reduce ground controller workload by delegating certain ‘conflict resolution’ activities carried out in radar-accessible airspace to the airborne flight crew.

In addition, they evaluated the use of satellite-based instead of radar-based communications systems to enhance operations over oceans and in other non-radar spaces that are currently quite restricted.

Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) uses GPS signals to transmit an aircraft’s location to the ground and in turn enables pilots to see exactly what controllers see – other aircraft in the sky around them regardless of weather conditions.

In fact, ADS-B can be used to replace radar-based systems given its ability to give an entire picture of the runway, planes on the ground and moving vehicles and equipment.

Six different ASAS applications were developed by the Asstar team with simulation scenarios and software created explicitly for fast, real-time procedures.

Simulations also facilitated development of proposals for changes to International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) documentation. A safety assessment was conducted to assess the impact of new procedures on ground and airborne infrastructures.

Completion of the Asstar project promises to have major impact on ATM both in Europe and throughout the world. Asstar systems will facilitate GPS-type guidance for the airborne crew, enhancing efficiency and safety while removing workload from the ground-based controller.

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