Industry Leaders Agree That Multilateration and ADS-B Are Cornerstones of NextGen Surveillance

At the ATC Global conference in March, industry leaders participating in Sensis Corporations Multimode Surveillance the Cornerstone of NextGen Surveillance workshop agreed that multimode technology is a critical component of next generation air traffic systems.
Workshop speakers indicated that the highly reliable, easily tailorable surveillance coverage from multilateration, including Wide Area Multilateration (WAM), and Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B), is driving safety and efficiency enhancements in applications around the world. Andrew Desmond-Kennedy, senior expert, Surveillance Unit, EUROCONTROL, stated, For Europe, wed say that ADS-B, WAM and for the next few years Mode S are the cornerstones of European surveillance. According to workshop panelists, the reliability of multimode surveillance systems was noted as a distinct advantage of the technology. Over the last four years, there has been no outage [of our wide area multilateration system at Innsbruck], said Christian Scheiflinger, business unit manager, Austro Control. Speaking about the Colorado WAM system in the Rocky Mountains, Travis Vallin, former aeronautics director, Colorado Department of Transportation and current vice president/senior program manager, Jviation, said, Its been an accurate and reliable system. Multimode surveillance is defined as cooperative and dependent surveillance achieved through a network of fixed ground stations with stationary antennas. The multimode sensors address mixed avionics equipage, including Mode S, Mode A/C, and ADS-B. Applications include airport surface surveillance, secondary surveillance radar augmentation or replacement, high update rate surveillance in terminal and en route airspace for enabling new automation functions [such as Precision Runway Monitoring on Required Navigation Performance (RNP) approaches] and other specialized situations [Reduced Vertical Separation Minimum (RVSM) monitoring, noise monitoring and military range monitoring]. Further, panelists noted that multimode surveillance can be tailored to a specific area and expanded over time. Whats nice about WAM is that its tailored; you can tailor coverage to fit the unique environment, said Vallin. Further, Scheiflinger said, Its easy to extend coverage. We saw the demand of new coverage areas thats easy to fulfill with multilateration. Over the past decade, multimode surveillance techniques have gone from laboratory curiosities to become the substrate on which next generation surveillance is founded, said Marc Viggiano, senior vice president of Sensis Corporation. Its no longer a question of if but when this technology will become pervasive. In addition to Vallin, Scheiflinger and Desmond-Kennedy, workshop participants were: Khalid El Seed, senior ATC systems engineer & project manager, National Air Traffic Services (NATS); John Kefaliotis, vice president, NextGen air traffic systems, AES Division, ITT; Sid Koslow, vice president and chief technology officer, NAV CANADA; and Mike Gerry, vice president of Air Traffic Systems Products and Programs, Sensis. The distinguished panelists were successful in raising the understanding of multimode surveillance, the benefit to ANSPs and the role the technology is playing in next generation air traffic systems, said Viggiano. Presentation materials are available to download at:
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