Site Acceptance for the Central European DSA was declared in May and marked completion of the initial condition for the validation, and potential use of the European Directory Service (EDS), with user training then taking place in July.
EDS user training was held at EUROCONTROL’s Institute of Air Navigation Services (IANS) in Luxembourg and in the next step a validation period will prove various aspects of the operational concept and allow ANSPs to familiarise themselves with the technology new to ATC.
EUROCONTROL has been the driving force behind EDS and in 2011 contracted COMSOFT with the demanding development of the Directory Service Operational Concept (DSOC), with the intention of providing a means to exchange information automatically using Directory services. This study received attention not only in Europe but all over the world, and the resulting operational concept has been included in the ICAO EUR AMHS Manual as appendix G.
The EDS operational concept aims to solve the issues and fill in the gaps of the ATN Directory while being compatible, but at the same time less complex. The architecture of EDS intends to reduce the number of directory communication paths and allows for the central management of information, ultimately easing the efforts of individual States’ and Organisations’ management of information – a key element in the quest to synchronise Air Traffic Management.
With training complete, an extended validation period can now begin, enabling ANSPs to gain their first experiences with this new technology, in a real world environment, and become confident using it.
The use of Directory services by AMHS is also a key element of the Extended ATS Message Handling Service (ATSMHS), as defined by ICAO Doc 9880 Part II, which specifies the use of an online Directory service based on the proven X.500 Directory model. A centralised, online Directory service will provide a fully automated exchange of information through standardised protocols and, in the initial step, work in parallel and well synchronised with the ATS Messaging Management Centre (AMC) to complement the distribution of information through a second channel.
The validation process is set to commence at the end of autumn for eight months, and will be a major benefit for interested ANSPs to acquaint themselves with EDS at an early stage.