The new air traffic control system realised by SELEX Sistemi Integrati, a Finmeccanica company, has been inaugurated in the Air Traffic Service Authority (ATSA) centre located in Sofia. The system, which will be able to control the whole Bulgarian air space and to manage the approach air navigation over Sofia, Varna and part of the Black Sea, is one of the key elements of the Bulgarian air traffic management modernisation programme.
The equipment installed in Sofia is the last generation of ATM (Air Traffic Management) products SELEX Sistemi Integrati has produced so far both in terms of functions and of architecture and performance. Based on the most advanced SATCAS (Standard Air Traffic Control Automatic System) technology, it allows a high level of automation, improving the coordination between civil and military air traffic controllers. Moreover, it will be able to take up the increasing Bulgarian air traffic, which, in the next 15 years it is supposed to increase of about 20%. The system has been designed by SELEX Sistemi Integrati together with Eurocontrol (European Organisation for the safety of air navigation) and the Bulgarian air navigation service provider ATSA. In fact, the Sofia centre is equipped with innovative functions and integrates the ARTAS system, a product developed by Eurocontrol to provide analysis and radar data correlation, now become a standard for all ATC systems manufacturers. The system architecture is based on servers working in an integrated way, thus providing an easy resolution of any kind of problem in a very short time. In fact, the new SATCAS is able to alert the operator of possible problems in less than one second and to recover all its functionalities in less than three seconds, thus shortening very much the reaction time with respect to the previous versions. If compared with the main competitors solutions, SELEX Sistemi Integratis system represents the most advanced ever of all ATM products. SELEX Sistemi Integrati system provides an essential contribution to the security strategy of air space and allows the company to further enlarge its presence in Bulgaria. The company, in fact, has been present in the Country since 1997 with the installation of three radar systems for approach control in the airports of Sofia, Varna e Burgas and two radar systems for en-route control in the mountain sites of Vitosha e Varbitza.