ENAIRE and the European Aviation Safety Agency, EASA, held a strategic bilateral meeting to discuss ENAIRE's technological and innovation projects, such as the development and implementation in Spain of U-space, the European concept for the automated management of drone operations based on a set of digital services; Startical, a recent initiative developed by ENAIRE and INDRA to provide satellite ADS-B surveillance services and VHF and data communications based on the "new space" concept, which will allow levels of service in oceanic and remote areas that are similar to those provided over mainland areas; the recategorisation of wake turbulence separation (RECAT), among others, and to enhance cooperation between the two entities.
The Executive Director of EASA, Patrick Ky, the Drone Programme Manager, María Algar, and the Head of the Air Traffic Department, Jussi Myllarniemi, learned about ENAIRE's projects from its Managing Director, Angel Luis Arias; the Director of Air Navigation Services, Enrique Maurer, the Director of Business Development, Mariluz de Mateo, and the Head of the Security, Quality and Environment Division, Santiago Cortés.
ENAIRE presents its latest technological advances in air navigation in Spain to EASA.The meeting allowed ENAIRE to update EASA on the progress being made in safety, U-space, the deployment of satellite surveillance and communications services through the deployment of a satellite constellation (Startical), and to address system certifications, issues that are essential to the future of air traffic management in Europe, as well as the main challenges facing the entity, most notably:
- Development and deployment of the U-Space platform, which will allow ENAIRE to provide and deploy U-Space services nationwide in order to automatically and digitally manage drone operations beyond line of sight in specifically designated spaces called "U-space airspace", once the new U-Space European Regulation enters into force in January 2023. As a provider of common information services (CIS), ENAIRE will be the sole facilitator of operational information and data, and interface between conventional air traffic service providers and U-Space operators.
- Presentation of Startical, the joint venture between ENAIRE and Indra to provide services to the global air traffic system community. It will combine surveillance and communications services through the deployment of a constellation of nanosatellites as a certified solution to provide coverage in ocean and remote regions, and act as a backup in mainland areas, without requiring any changes to avionics or to the existing infrastructures of air navigation service providers
- Improvements in the air traffic management (ATM) system, such as the recategorisation of wake turbulence separation (RECAT) between consecutive aircraft, which will increase operational efficiency.
- Other issues addressed included changes to safety risk assessments, certification of air traffic management equipment, and training and licensing of air traffic controllers.