Airtel ATN, dedicated to the development of communications software for the Aeronautical Telecommunications Network (ATN), together with ARINC, announces the launch of a new commercial ATN test facility in Dublin.

The ATN enables secure and timely data link communications between an air traffic controller and an aircraft. It removes the need for routine voice contact, reduces congestion and increases air traffic control (ATC) efficiency and capacity. The European Commission has designated the ATN as a mandatory component on all aircraft flying in European airspace above flight level 285 and must be implemented for all new aircraft operating in European airspace by February 2013 and existing aircraft by February 2015.

Airtel ATN is the first commercial company in the world to provide this testing service to aircraft operators. Airtel ATN’s test equipment will continue to support the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (EUROCONTROL) Experimental Centre in Bretigny (EEC).

“ARINC has a long and successful relationship with Airtel ATN,” said Pete Grogan, senior director, ARINC. “We are working with Airtel ATN to offer this service to our European and Middle East customers needing to comply with EC 29/2009, the data link services implementing rule.”

ARINC will also offer test and validation services to avionics manufacturers, ANSPs and aircraft operators in the US.

“We first started working with ARINC in 1999 on the implementation of the industries first ATN network which went live in 2002,” said Frank O’Connor, CEO, Airtel ATN. “We expect this test facility will be a timely support to EEC Bretingy now that the 2013 date is only 17 months away.”