SITAONAIR to deliver Prague ATC comms

The Czech Republic’s air navigation service provider has appointed SITAONAIR to deliver a ‘communication gateway’ to its capital’s airport.

SITAONAIR will support air-to-ground data link applications to Prague Airport through its Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) network. The ambition is to extend this capability out to other Czech airports in the future.

SITAONAIR’s communication gateway will provide a channel for Air Navigation Service of the Czech Republic (ANS CR) to send Digital Automatic Terminal Information Service (D-ATIS) and data link departure clearance (DCL) messages to aircraft. This will be equally beneficial to pilots and Air Traffic Control (ATC), replacing routine messages on congested voice frequencies with digital messages, to minimize the risk of misunderstanding.

It will also reduce air traffic controllers’ and pilots’ workloads by ensuring ATC messages in the cockpit are displayed on screen, or printed in-cockpit. This will ensure that pilots won’t have to rely on interpreting bad quality voice messages.

François Bardin, head of air traffic service solutions at SITAONAIR, said: “It is a source of pride to us that we have been chosen to deliver this project for the Czech Republic’s air navigation service provider. Establishing this new communications gateway for ground-to-air data link applications, using our data link network, will not only greatly enhance our existing service for ANS CR, and the consistency and safety of controller-pilot communications, but offer complete end-to-end support.”

Ivo Priplata, ATM/CNS expert, COM domain of ANS CR, added: “SITAONAIR was an easy choice for us to deliver what will be a very important enhancement to our ground-to-air data link communications capabilities. Nearly 800,000 aircraft movements in Czech airspace, including some 200,000 arrivals and departures, were handled by us in 2015 alone. The addition of SITAONAIR’s data link communications infrastructure will therefore be a very important evolution in reinforcing the flows of efficient, reliable and safe communications in Czech airspace.”

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