New DFS In-House Developments Demonstrated at ATC Global

At stand H 208 at ATC Global 2010, the German air navigation service provider DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung showed several of its new developments and solutions for the air traffic services community. A newly built tower console was be at the stand plus the further enhanced radar-data processing system Phoenix and its new flight-data processing component, as well as a new position-logging system for the electronic recording of working times and responsibilities of controllers. Apart from these systems, the arrival manager 4D Planner and other solutions — all in-house developments — will be presented.

“The future of air navigation services will depend on organisations looking closely at efficiency and cost-effectiveness, and taking a holistic approach to solving these challenges. Using appropriate concepts, solutions and new developments is decisive in this process,” says Stefan Lentz, director of DFS’ aeronautical solutions business unit, which supports other organisations in air traffic management matters.

New tower console

The newly built tower console equipped with the latest automation systems will be the eye-catcher at the stand. DFS designed the console for its new tower in Frankfurt, which will be in operation by 2011 together with the fourth runway. The ergonomic and flexible console can also easily be installed in any other small or large tower. Different air traffic management components can be integrated according to individual needs.

Radar-data processing system

DFS has integrated the radar-data processing system Phoenix into the console. The system is in use at several towers throughout Germany and worldwide. The Brazilian air navigation service organisation, for example, has just recently acquired the system. Now, Phoenix not only displays the air situation but also the ground situation, so that the aerodrome controller can easily zoom in from the air to the ground. The safety net functions Short Term Conflict Alert, Area Intrusion Alert and Minimum Safe Altitude Warning are integral parts of Phoenix. Weather data are also processed and visualised on the radar screen.

Tower flight-data processing system

The flight-data processing system is a new development by DFS. Controllers can edit flight-plan data of arrivals and departures, process and correlate it to tracks, and write with a pen directly on the screen on the electronic flight-progress strips. The different pieces of information are displayed in different colours to ensure greater clarity. Bird migration can also be shown.

Electronic position log

DFS presented its new position logging system (PoLo) at the stand for the first time. It is used to electronically record working times and responsibilities of air traffic controllers. The controllers use their company ID cards to log in.

PoLo can show the consolidation or division of airspaces when used in en-route control, and it can also be used at towers. It gives supervisors a complete overview of all activities. Authorisations, ratings and training times can be documented in a user-friendly manner. The data can be retrieved at any time, for example in the case of an incident investigation. PoLo has already been introduced at all en-route control centres in Germany as well as at the DFS working positions in the Eurocontrol centre in Maastricht. PoLo is also ready for implementation at the towers of the international airports in Germany.

Arrival manager with modular structure

Within the last year, the 4D Planner arrival management system has undergone several changes: now it can be even more easily integrated into existing environments due to its generic and modular structure. Customer-specific needs can be taken into account, ensuring the delivery of an efficient and cost-effective solution. The 4D Planner allows more movements to be processed at one time, reduces costs and the impact on the environment. Early results in Germany showed a reduction in the average arrival time by approximately 60s. Controllers can also optimally manage arrivals and departures by using the 4D Planner together with departure managers, for example with the system from delair Air Traffic Systems.

Apart from Frankfurt and Munich, the two largest international hubs in Germany, the 4D Planner will be implemented at Berlin Brandenburg International Airport, and from 2011, the Brazilian air navigation services organisation will also use the German-made arrival manager at various locations.

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