Tuesday, May 6, 2008

NextGen 201: Performance-based Navigation

Welcome to Wired!

As we discussed in the NextGen 101, the future of National Air Space, specifically Air Traffic Control, is drastically changing. We discussed the benefit of Satellite Based Augmentation Systems (SBAS) in terms of performance and shared an insight into the technology, standards and governing agencies. In this edition of Wired we will take a look at how SBAS and other technologies are a component of Performance-based Navigation and how these technologies yield operational improvements that directly affect operational safety and fiscal exposure to the operator.

Required Navigation Performance (RNP) and Area Navigation (RNAV) are keen aspects of any airspace modernization program. There are currently 209 RNAV SIDS and STARS and 22 RNP approaches published in the United States alone. The RNAV and RNP procedures create more airways into and out-of otherwise congested airports. Performance-based navigation is proved to save fuel, relieve congestion and reduce delays at many airports both domestic and international. RNP approaches take advantage of onboard flight management computers and/or systems computational capabilities to affect precise navigation, including guidance for precise curved flight paths such as Constant Radius Arc (RF) legs, to direct the aircraft through difficult and specified flight corridors during both the arduous transitional phases before and after arrival/departure, and during less demanding enroute phase of flight. ASIG is a technology leader in the development of integrated flight decks capable of sustained RNAV and RNP flight operations. Our STCs feature both integration architecture and equipage capable of precise navigation to RNP 0.3 standards without the benefit of extra-sensory IRU and DME/DME input.

Looking forward, WAAS-enabled systems will provide additional enhanced RNP capabilities. Improved crew alerting, Course Deviation Indication (CDI) scaling, and display output provide the operational approval path for the Federal Aviation Administration to develop RNP approaches into numerous airports such as Palm Springs, Long Beach, Orange County, Sun Valley and Washington, DC.

PRNAV in the European performance-based navigation standard. ASIG is keeping abreast of these developments and ensuring that our integrated flight decks continue to provide the precise guidance and alerting necessary to support future performance-based navigation flight paths and truly global dispatch ability. At ASIG, we are committed to the advancement of navigation systems that allow our clients to bridge international boundaries thereby benefiting the aviation community worldwide, the flying public and operator bottom-lines which will benefit the consumer through competition in the marketplace.

In our next edition of Wired we will expand on the modern age of navigational aids by looking at Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) by looking at the operational benefits and FAA program objectives of ADS-B. We'll also start to generalize about the implementation schedule for these exciting NextGen technologies.

Until next time stay 5x5, Mission Ready & Wired!
To learn more about ASIG's approach to aircraft modernization programs or the products and services available from the Avionics & Systems Integration Group, please visit us online at http://www.asigllc.com/, via email at info@asigllc.com, or contact us direct at 866.890.ASIG [2744].