Harris has been selected by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to provide a new voice system called National Airspace System (NAS) Voice System (NVS) to support the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) programme.
Under the $291.6m contract with a five-year base and five two-year options, Harris will replace the existing voice switches, currently operating independently at individual facilities, with the new systems.
NVS will be deployed at air traffic control (ATC) towers, terminal and en route facilities, and upcoming NextGen ATC facilities to support ground-to-ground voice communications between ATC and air-to-ground between controllers and aircraft.
FAA administrator Michael Huerta said the new system will serve as interconnecting technologies as part of NextGen.
"NVS will help ensure more efficient and reliable voice communications between our air traffic facilities as we maintain the world’s safest aviation system," Huerta said.
Featuring new router-based telecommunications technologies, NAV will allow FAA to switch to a NAS-wide networked system.
FAA said that NVS initiative will also allow it to route, examine and share data from one facility to another, in addition to share controller workload between facilities as per the requirement.
NVS will also support airspace redesign, dynamic re-sectorisation and offloading, and business continuity planning to protect against a loss of communications at ATC facilities.
The implementation of NVS is also anticipated to provide FAA with improved visibility and control over communications resources as a unified system versus individual platforms.
FAA is implementing the NextGen initiative to enhance tracking and guiding accuracy of air traffic, as well as save fuel and reduce air traffic noise.
Image: FAA’s NextGen initiative is aimed at improving the flow of air traffic in the US airports. Photo: courtesy of the US Department of Transportation.