Brussels, Belgium --[ASDWire.com]-- The flexible use of airspace (FUA) concept has now been applied throughout continental Europe for ten years, EUROCONTROL, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation, announced today.
First introduced on 28 March 1996 in most European Civil Aviation Conference (ECAC) States, this flexible approach to airspace use was designed to increase the capacity of the overall air traffic system by giving both civil and military users access to airspace when they need it. Consequently, any airspace segregation needed to separate military activities potentially hazardous to civil aircraft operations would be temporary, based on actual usage and restricted to a specific time period.
The application of the FUA concept has led to a host of advantages: improved civil-military coordination, better airspace management, more efficient separation of Operational and General Air Traffic, and overall a net gain in airspace capacity.
Currently implemented in 30 ECAC States, FUA enables shorter routing, as well as allowing substantial economies in terms of fuel saved (15,000 tons a year) and a reduction in carbon emissions (45,000 tons a year). This in turn has contributed to an overall saving for the air traffic management community of around € 11,000,000 every year since 1996.
“This anniversary could not have been better timed”, stated José Martins Dos Santos, Airspace Management, Flow Management and Navigation Business Division at EUROCONTROL. “The application of the FUA concept has recently been reinforced within EU States following the publication of European Commission Regulation (EC) No. 2150/2005 laying down common rules for the flexible use of airspace (23/12/05)”
One of the major challenges of flexible use of airspace for the next five years will be to make use of European airspace in a more dynamic manner by enabling airspace allocation / re-allocation as close as possible to the time of operations in order to accommodate short-term changes in traffic situation and/or user requirements.
The added value of the dynamic airspace management process for airspace users is to ensure equitable treatment in the allocation of airspace and trajectories required at short notice, to allow users to make better-informed decisions and to offer a larger choice of possible routeing options.
Note to Editors:
EUROCONTROL, the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation, has as its primary objective the development of a seamless, pan-European air traffic management (ATM) system which fully accommodates the growth in air traffic, while maintaining a high level of safety, enhancing cost-efficiency and respecting the environment.
EUROCONTROL has 36 Member States: Albania, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
On 8 October 2002, the Member States and the European Community signed a Protocol on the Accession of the European Community to the revised EUROCONTROL Convention. Pending its entry into force after ratification by all Parties, certain provisions of the Protocol are already being provisionally applied.