Don't miss future headlines.  Sign-up to receive the Flt Tech Online Weekly News Summary via e-mail.

Click Here To Go Back To Headlines

In The News

ADS-B Is Core Element of Sweden’s ATM Strategy

ADS-B (broadcast automatic dependent surveillance) is the core element of Sweden’s ATM (advanced traffic management) strategy, and VDL Mode 4 (VHF digital link using mode- 4) is Sweden’s favored technology.

Jens Redeborn, a project manager and systems engineer for the Swedish CAA (SCAA) told the recent International Advanced Aviation Technologies Conference in Anchorage that SCAA sees ADS-B and VDL-4 as a cost efficient and flexible way to improve airspace management, by “thinking big, but starting small.” This approach is best, in Redeborn’s view, since it is a complex process and requires cross-domain expertise.

Redeborn said the SCAA sees VDL-4 as a basic CNS component that supports communications, navigation and surveillance applications in all phases of flight, while avoiding the need to have multiple datalink installations.  Furthermore, it is affordable and useable by all user groups, and finally, it can be easily expanded to support the needs of all regions, independent of a ground infrastructure – although it might be enhanced with ground installations in some cases.

For these reasons, the SCAA sees VDL-4 as the optimal solution for ADS-B as well as other data broadcast applications such as ATIS, NOTAMS, weather, radar data, and differential GPS augmentation.

Other important VDL-4 attributes, according to Redeborn, include its ability to support time critical applications, and to work at long range.  In addition, it is well tested (since 1993); meets ICAO standards; has European industry support; and transmits in the aviation VHF spectrum of 108-to-137-Mhz.

VDL-4 became operational in Sweden in December 2003 for ADS-B, TIS-B (broadcast traffic information service) and satellite navigation augmentation, and has been used for ADS-B and for A-SMGCS (advanced surface movement guidance and control system) at Stockholm’s Arlanda.   ADS-B, using VDL-4 is operational at Kiruna, in Sweden’s far north, bringing surveillance to that remote area, similar to what Capstone has accomplished in Alaska.  By 2005, Sweden will have ADS ground station coverage at all controlled airports and will have area coverage over the entire country down to 3,000 feet, Redeborn said.

SCAA is also working to demonstrate how general aviation and other non-commercial aircraft operations – including military – can be improved with ADS-B.  It intends to do this with large scale operational trials and demonstrations in the Östgöta terminal area, where numerous types of aircraft operate, so that a number of operational scenarios can be presented and evaluated.

Outside of Sweden, a number of European ADS-B activities involving VDL-4 are underway as well, Redeborn reported, including NUP (the NEAN Update Program Phase II), the MEDUP (Mediterranean Update Program), MFF (Mediterranean Free Flight), and the SEAP (South European Pre-Implementation ADS Program).

SEAP is planning for a large scale deployment of VDL-4-based ADS in Spain and Portugal.  The program’s main partners include the European Commission, AENA (Spanish Aviation Authority) , NAV Portugal, the Swedish CAA, BAE Systems, INDRA (a Spanish information technology company), and Boeing.

There is also a joint Swedish, Russian and Finish VDL-4-based ADS-B effort to assure the interoperability and standardization of different interfaces, applications and networks, including an aligned ADS-B implementation platform between Stockholm, Helsinki, St Petersburg and Moscow.

Outside of Europe, Mongolia is moving to implement VDL-4 for domestic use, with ground stations already installed at Ulaanbathaar and Muren, and VDL-4 avionics being installed on a Fokker 50, an AN24, and an MI-8 helicopter with CDTIs (cockpit display of traffic information).  Mongolia also wants to use a VDL-4 SMGCS (surface movement guidance and control system) at Ulaanbathaar’s airport.  06-04-2004.

Click here to become a registered Flt Tech Online subscriber and receive headlines delivered to your e-mail each week

Click here to go back to the headlines