Flights Will Become More Productive And Environmentally Friendly Thanks To Space Technology


In the near future, air passengers will be able to forget about flight delays and stop worrying about the harmful effect on the environment – all this thanks to the new flight management system.iris_artist_impression_node_full_image_21
© Wikipedia

The goal of the IRIS program is to provide aircraft with satellite data transmission channels to help pilots and air traffic controllers use the most short and rapid routes, thus increasing productivity, saving fuel and reducing environmental pollution.

This system, funded by the European Space Agency (ESA), in collaboration with the International Satellite Communication Company INMARSAT based in London, will be tested on separate flights in the coming months, and its commercial use is scheduled for 2021.

Several national air traffic control systems from Belgium, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Holland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and Great Britain agreed to test the commercial system.

Manufacturers of aircraft develop and certify commercial avionics to maintain technology, and Inmarsat has entered into an agreement with European Satellite Services Provider (a group of seven national air traffic management organizations) for the definition of future markets and commercial perspectives.

"IRIS technology is ready for use," says Magali Weissier from Eka. – We are very pleased that they have achieved this important mark on the way to safer, eco-friendly and productive airfares. ".

Space technology will complement an existing ground system. Now, to determine the location of the aircraft and their directions, dispatchers use radar. Then they communicate with pilots, consulting them. However, this approach is very laborious and requires large buffer safety zones around aircraft, which can limit the throughput capacity of the air traffic and lead to delays. Moreover, it is necessary to have a field of view between aircraft and terrestrial radar stations, and this is impossible when the aircraft flight through the oceans, which leads to the use of even large buffer zones.

Together with ESA INMARSAT developed a method for converting the system into digital form. Equipping each aircraft terminals for IRIS satellite data transmission allows dispatchers to manage an increasingly rich air movement without having to communicate with each pilot separately. Flight plans can be constantly updated directly on the way, thereby providing an optimal trajectory to the destination. This allows the dispatchers to plan landings in advance, maximizing the bandwidth of airspace and airports and at the same time minimizing fuel consumption and carbon dioxide release.

As a result, the IRIS system will allow air traffic controllers to cope with the predicted increasing number of flights and ensure safety in the sky.


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