Government-appointed air navigation services provider HungaroControl has launched a large-scale controller pilot data link communications project to develop the Hungarian air traffic infrastructure for a total of €6.8m.

The project will be taken up according to the European integration requirements.

The aim of the project is to increase flight safety and enhance Hungary’s air navigation capacity using radio frequencies. Pilots and controllers will be able to use data link services to communicate with each other through text messages, apart from verbal communication.

More than 80% of the €6.8m project will be financed by HungaroControl, while the remaining 20% will be sponsored by the European Union through the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T).

"HungaroControl has always been a pioneer in the adoption of new technologies."

The company plans to launch the services in February 2015 as a function of the upgraded version of Magyar Automated and Integrated Air Traffic System (MATIAS), which is one of the world’s most advanced air traffic control systems.

An additional communication channel will also be introduced to enable pilots and controllers to send non-time critical messages. This will help controllers to exchange information within a shorter time, as well as allow them to communicate with several pilots simultaneously, which is expected to increase the airport’s air traffic management capacity.

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Apart from accelerating routine performance, congestion of voice channels and interference-led misunderstandings will also be reduced due to data link. Accidental posting of messages will be controlled by the company’s MATIAS Build 10.1 air navigation software.

HungaroControl CEO Kornél Szepessy said: "HungaroControl has always been a pioneer in the adoption of new technologies.

"HungaroControl is also in the vanguard of developing the CPDLC technology in Europe and we are convinced that using data link communication may considerably improve flight safety and the capacity of air navigation service providers."

As a part of the project, communication infrastructure will be set up and the Hungarian regulatory background will be established, which will be in accordance with recommendations of European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (EUROCONTROL) and International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).