Controller Tools and Team Organisation for the Provision of Separation in Air Traffic Management – PJ 10 (PROSA)
BULATSA hosted a Visitors’ Day demonstrating the Validation Exercise of the TESLA (Tactical Encounter Solver Assistant) prototype. The event took place at BULATSA premises on November 21, 2017 and was attended by representatives of AIRBUS, EUROCONTROL, INDRA, THALES, DFS, COOPANS and BULATSA.
TESLA (Tactical Encounter Solver Assistant) is a joint project of Airbus D&S and BULATSA, launched in 2016 under the PJ 10 PROSA (Controller Tools and Team Organisation for the Provision of Separation in the Air Traffic Management) of the SESAR 2020 Programme.
SESAR 2020 is the EU programme for development of new technologies in air traffic management. It is managed by the SESAR Joint Undertaking (SJU) and funded by the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme. It encompasses a series of projects with the aim to develop and validate new air traffic management technology solutions.
Air Traffic Controllers (ATCOs) are responsible for the provision of safe and efficient air traffic services. In order to monitor and communicate with the airplanes ATCOs are assisted by automated air traffic management systems. The main task is to maintain separation in order to avoid dangerous proximity between aircrafts and ground and airborne delays. The continuous traffic growth and the introduction of Free Route Airspace set up serious challenges before the ATCOs, that require the introduction of new technological solutions to improve flight safety and performance.
Between 13 and 17 November 2017, the dedicated teams of BULATSA and Airbus D&S jointly carried out a validation exercise of the TESLA prototype, on the especially equipped test platform “BULATSA innovation grid” – with real time simulation and work positions for ATCOs and pseudo-pilots. The purpose of the validation was to test the prototype and to collect specialized information on the TESLA maturity to support its subsequent development, according to the requirements and standards set by SJU.
The aim of TESLA is to assist the ATCOs in resolving potential conflicts in high density terminal areas. The prototype assesses and presents the ATCOs with various options for preventing potential conflicts by tracking and analyzing aircraft trajectories. TESLA shows which solutions are safe for each specific situation – whether the aircraft should climb or descent, and at what vertical speed rate. Other possible solutions are to change the direction of the flight and adjust the speed of the aircraft in order to avoid potential conflicts. The results and assessment of the maturity status of the TESLA prototype are expected at the end of the first quarter of 2018.
The behaviour and capabilities of TESLA were presented during the Visitors Day, through simulation of air traffic services with medium and high traffic in the generic TMA based on the Sofia Airport TMA. Using the prototype, ATCOs demonstrated possible solutions for a large number of conflict situations.
As the technological pillar of the Single European Sky initiative, SESAR aims to modernise and harmonise air traffic management in Europe. The SESAR Joint Undertaking (SESAR JU) was established in 2007 as a public-private partnership to support this endeavour. It does so by pooling the knowledge and resources of the entire ATM community in order to define, research, develop and validate innovative technological and operational solutions. The SESAR JU is also responsible for the execution of the European ATM Master Plan which defines the EU priorities for R&D and implementation. Founded by the European Union and Eurocontrol, the SESAR JU has 19 members, who together with their partners and affiliate associations will represent over 100 companies working in Europe and beyond. The SESAR JU also works closely with staff associations, regulators, airport operators and the scientific community.
PJ10 PROSA has received funding from the SESAR Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 734143.