PJ03A Integrated surface management (SUMO)
Title of Proposal:
SESAR.IR-VLD.Wave1-00-2015 Integrated Surface Management
Grant Agreement number: 734153 (H2020-SESAR-2015-2/H2020-SESAR-2015-2)
According to the SESAR2020 Multi Annual Program: 2016 – 2019
PJ.03a-01 – Enhanced guidance assistance to aircraft and vehicles on the airport surface combined with routing
Project work includes extension of the routing function of the Advanced-Surface Movement Guidance and Control System (A-SMGCS) to avoid potential traffic conflicts, an improved use of the information of Arrival MANager (AMAN) and Departure MANager (DMAN), and their integration with the overall airport management procedures. It includes the exchange of virtual stop bar identifiers and status between air traffic controllers and flight crews to improve safety in low-visibility conditions. The exchange of information between Air Traffic Control (ATC) and vehicles/aircraft will be improved with the use of airport data-link and other guidance means.
The objective of this solution is to increase pilots’ and vehicle drivers’ situational awareness by providing them with supplementary guidance means in all weather conditions. Both pilots and vehicle drivers will be provided with a display (Airport Moving Map) of airport layout (including taxiways, runways and fixed obstacles), status of stop bars and virtual stop bars, their own location, as well as the taxi clearances issued by the Air Traffic Control (ATC). The implementation of Dynamic Virtual Block Control by means of Virtual Stop Bars will make traffic flows smoother and more predictable during low visibility conditions. In this context, it is important to ensure consistency of the information shared by all relevant stakeholders (controllers, pilots and vehicle drivers). Controllers will be supported by an enhanced controller workplace based on 3D simplified perspective visualization with dynamically rendered information. To this end, centralized routing and planning optimization algorithms will be implemented, including a positioning and integrity system based on Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), to provide accurate and available navigation information with high integrity, provided by the vehicles/aircraft, in order to provide consistent plans to all stakeholders with minimal conflicts. The availability of timing information provided through the integration of airport sequencing tools (such as AMAN and DMAN) and surface management tools will further improve the efficiency of the planning process. Besides, the potential misunderstandings when using radiotelephony will be further reduced through the implementation of data-link services for the exchange of a fixed pre-set clearances/instructions. Supplementary guidance means will be provided through implementation and standardization of the so called “Follow-The-Greens” procedures which are based on the Airport Ground Lighting – AGL. With respect to SESAR 1 activities focused on aprons, PJ.03a-01 is expected to also investigate the use of “Follow-The-Greens” on taxiways and runways. Furthermore, AGL is intended to be used for speed control to minimize the holding of vehicles/aircraft at intersections. The reduction of speed changes, fewer stops and re-starts during taxiing will result in less changes during taxiing, which will improve the predictability of airport surface operations.
Making the airport surface operations safe and efficient is a must for an Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP), especially when operating in a high density environment. In this context, airports become a key element in the air traffic network in order to support the increased traffic trend through new R&I (Research & Innovation) concepts capable of meeting the upcoming challenges that limit airport operations.
SESAR (#SESAR) R&I projects PJ03a and PJ03b support ANSPs by focusing on these new challenges and defining new concepts and functionalities helping Air Traffic Controllers (ATCOs) perform their daily tasks.
BULATSA is part of these projects working in an international team with LEONARDO to share its view and know-how to better define such functionalities and support PJ03a/PJ03b validations via a real time simulation at its Sofia center.
BULATSA ATCOs are involved in the validation activities, supported by the A-SMGCS Industrial Based Platform – IBP of LEONARDO installed at Sofia ATC premises, with the purpose of addressing and demonstrating the following aspects:
- enhanced automated Controller assistance for Surface Movement Planning and Routing;
- improved ATCOs and vehicle drivers’ situational awareness, by sharing routes and clearances via data-link communications;
- increased level of safety provided by an enhanced airport safety support tool for ATCOs;
- assessment of human performance indicators in the use of these new functionalities.
Between 22-26 October 2018, BULATSA and LEONARDO conducted validations of functionalities related to Route Planning and Management (PJ.03a).
The validation findings confirmed that the validation software created by the LEONARDO specialists, object of the validation, has the requested functionalities and they work reliably and sustainably. However, before achieving an industrial solution, a number of functionalities have to be refined – mainly on reducing the time to refresh the location of the targets on the screen, as well as improving the Human-Machine Interface – HMI to improve its speed and the commands used to access the functionalities.
Forthcoming is the work on the preparation of the validation report and a a Visitor’s Day, to be held on 22 February 2019 in BULATSA.