ENAIRE improves operations at the Alicante-Elche Miguel Hernández Airport with new satellite-based navigation instrument approach procedures

- Madrid, Spain.

Today, ENAIRE, the national air navigation service provider, in coordination with Aena, implemented satellite-based navigation instrument approach procedures at the Alicante-Elche Miguel Hernández Airport.

In doing so, ENAIRE enhances the efficiency of operations, as well as accessibility to the Airport by providing it with additional instrument approach manoeuvres. Since these procedures do not depend on ground-based navaids, they provide a very useful solution as they are phased in by airlines with the proper equipment, and as an improvement or alternative to conventional approaches. To carry out this operation based on the use of satellite navigation, aircraft need to be properly equipped and their crews trained on its use. The new operation relies on the European EGNOS satellite navigation system.

The new operation relies on the European EGNOS satellite navigation system

As for the VOR/DME non-precision approach instrument procedures currently in use for RWY 28, the new satellite-based maneuvers improve performance by providing vertical guidance to aircraft in the final phase of the approach and bringing the decision height - which is where the pilot must decide whether to continue or abort the landing - closer to the runway threshold, thus improving service continuity at the airport under low cloud ceiling conditions.

Satellite navigation at other airports

The recent implementation of satellite navigation procedures in Alicante is in addition to those already in place at the airports of Reus, Josep Tarradellas Barcelona-El Prat, Valencia, Palma, Lleida-Alguaire, Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas and others as part of ENAIRE's Plan to Implement Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) Procedures. In addition, the Málaga-Costa del Sol Airport has a satellite-based ground augmentation system called GBAS, and precision instrument operations based on this system.

This process of implementing new maneuvers based on satellite navigation will help to further meet the requirements of the Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) Implementation Plan, laid out in ENAIRE's Strategic Plan, the 2025 Flight Plan. It also assists in complying with European Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1048, the aim of which is to improve the efficiency of air traffic management at the European level by implementing performance-based navigation (PBN).

In order to allow these new procedures to go into operation, ENAIRE has conducted the necessary safety studies, which were duly processed with the National Aviation Safety Agency (AESA).

Through this effort, ENAIRE is making available to users of the Alicante-Elche Miguel Hernández Airport satellite-based approach procedures that improve the safety and consistency of operations at the airport. And it does all this without having to set up additional land infrastructure, with the benefits this entails.


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