The Federal Aviation Association and the European Commission last week reached an agreement that will allow the United States and Europe to collaborate on research aimed at providing seamless air-traffic services between the two continents.
“Harmonization is the key to the future of air travel over the North Atlantic,” said FAA Chief Operating Officer Hank Krakowski, who signed a Memorandum of Consultations with Daniel Calleja, European Commission director for air transport in Madrid. “This agreement allows us to work together to give the airlines a seamless transition between our airspaces.”
The agreement calls for 22 specific areas of cooperation. These areas include research on Data Comm, which will improve safety and efficiency by replacing voice communications with data communications. Research will also be conducted on systems used by other parts of the aviation community, including the European Commission, the airlines, the military and the Department of Homeland Security.
Collaborative research will also be conducted on emerging technologies such as 4-D Trajectory-Based Operations, which introduce the fourth dimension of time to the existing dimensions of latitude, longitude and altitude in an aircraft’s flight profile.
The new agreement replaces a 2007 Memorandum of Understanding between the FAA and the European Commission, which enabled both sides to work on basic strategies in the transition toward NextGen and SESAR. The new agreement calls for specific, joint research and development on NextGen/SESAR projects.