This year’s Integrated Communication, Navigation and Surveillance (i-cns) conference was held in Washington DC from April 8 - 10. The ICNS concentrated on “Blocks and Builds – Air and Ground Convergence”. The event covered long-term research and development, as well as the current implementation of integrated CNS technologies. The aim was to demonstrate the significant improvements in safety and airspace efficiency envisaged by programs such as NextGen and the Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) initiative.
The conference once more demonstrated how global ATM services are merging within SESAR and NextGen. Frequentis attended ICNS and gave a paper presentation about “Ontology-based representation and semantic querying of Digital Notices to Airmen (NOTAM)” presenting the first outcome of the research project SemanticNOTAM. It aims to fully utilise the potential benefits of having NOTAMs available and distributed digitally in the envisioned System Wide Information Management (SWIM) approach by providing complementary support for intelligent filtering and querying of Digital NOTAMs, using a wide range of criteria based on event types of NOTAMs, types of aircraft or flight, as well as location in space and progress in time. This will enable to give airmen and -women the intelligent support for NOTAM management they ask for. Semantic systems are characterised so they separate a declarative (usually logic-based) knowledge representation of data and business rules of a domain from processing-engines that reason over the knowledge or query extensional data of the knowledge base.
They are therefore in line with the move to the data-centric nature of Aeronautical Information Management (AIM) from the product-centric nature of AIS and in addition provide a semantic description of data and business rules. By offering declarative specifications independent of use, semantic systems simplify interoperability and applications. This will allow for more effective airspace utilisation and improvements in trajectory management.
Optimised arrivals, departures and reduced queues aid to decrease environmental and noise pollutions. Intelligent filtering and querying of NOTAMs reduce information overload of air traffic controllers and pilots and assist them in organising relevant NOTAM information at hand. Reduced stress level and situation-aware NOTAM notification at situation-appropriate alert levels contribute to avoid air traffic incidents and thus, to air safety.