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Satellites Are Key To Future Air Navigation System

By | June 10, 2003

      The Federal Aviation Administration – along with other aviation agencies around the world – is moving ahead with implementation of the “future air navigation system” (FAN), which uses satellite communication and navigation and other advanced technology to improve air traffic control over oceans.

      Speaking at a recent Inmarsat Aeronautical Conference in Washington, D.C., Roger Kiely, head of Oceanic Procedures at the FAA, said that FAN is at the mid-point of its implementation. The goal of FAN is to improve data communications and navigational information between pilots and controllers while aircraft are over the ocean in order to improve safety while increasing efficiency and route flexibility through reduced minimum separation between aircraft.

      According to the FAA’s Strategic Plan for Oceanic Airspace Enhancements and Separation Reductions, the FAN is a “combination of advanced ground-based automation system, enhanced on-board flight management systems, ‘glass cockpit’ map displays, satellite communications and navigation, advanced surveillance systems, and collision avoidance systems [that] will transform the current oceanic ATC system into the modern oceanic air traffic management system envisioned by the FAA.”

      For more coverage of the conference, see the June 16 issue of SATELLITE NEWS. For more information on subscribing to PBI Media’s satellite newsletters, check out our Web site at

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