Corporacion Centroamericana de Servicios de Navegación Aérea (COCESNA), the agency responsible for air navigation services in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua has signed an agreement with SITA to implement its future air navigation system.
As part of the agreement , SITA will deliver future air navigation services (FANS) including automatic dependent surveillance contract (ADS-C) and controller pilot data link communications (CPDLC) to enhance the safety and efficiency of flights.
From early 2013, airlines flying in the Central American Flight Information Region will be equipped with FANS and supported by data link technology to facilitate aircraft surveillance and communications between pilots and air traffic control (ATC).
COCESNA CEO Ramón de Jésus Romero said that the service will benefit all carriers with FANS-equipped aircraft operating in airspace over Central America.
"It allows COCESNA to gain experience on data link communications and to optimise air traffic management and communication in the oceanic portion of our air space, which is vital for the air traffic flow between North and South America," Romero said.
Aircraft equipped with the ADS-C application will automatically transmit their identity, position, altitude and other information at regularly timed intervals to the ground-based ATM through a satellite data link.
The information will be displayed to offer accurate aircraft tracking information to ATCs.
ADS-C systems are capable of offering surveillance services in remote oceanic areas that do not have proper radio voice communications and are not fully reliable.
CPDLC will replace the regular voice communications between crew and ATCs with communications that are similar to email.
According to a study, the availability of email would reduce communication errors caused by factors such as heavy traffic levels, poor voice quality, fatigue or instantaneous transmissions.
The implementation of FANS is part of COCESNA's strategic objective to strengthen safety and consolidate communication resources for the benefit of its airspace users.
Image: FANS services will be operated from CENAMER Area Control Center located in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Photo: courtesy of enrique galeano morales.