will be able to make use of precision area navigation procedures this year
following European aviation regulators’ initial approvals of flight management
system database providers.
of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) have provided letters of
acceptance to navigation data suppliers European Aeronautical Group (EAG) and
area navigation (P-RNAV) procedures require aircraft to be able to maintain a
track to a lateral accuracy of 1nm (1.85km) for 95% of the time, through use of
on-board avionics or ground-based navaids.
concept is aimed at providing consistency of area navigation operations within
terminal airspace. P-RNAV will allow such operations to be based on a common
set of principles – as opposed to the present situation, where area navigation
is subject to national variations in approval requirements, procedure design,
and navigation data integrity.
from EASA follows audits of the database providers, conducted by the European
regulator in co-operation with the US FAA, which began around May and June this
navigation data specialist Jeppesen
is also undergoing a similar audit process.
says that the audit “ensures the integrity of the entire database production
process” and adds: “A supplier is entitled to have a letter of acceptance,
issued by EASA, when the supplier has demonstrated compliance with a number of
Systems’ says that, following the approval, some 110 airline customers of its Lido flight management system database will
be able to apply to use new P-RNAV procedures.
company says that the new procedures will be permitted from October this year
and will represent a “major innovation” in navigation.
provider EAG says: “With the advent of P-RNAV the aviation authorities decided,
in the interests of air safety, that operators should purchase their flight
management system databases from an approved supplier.
there were no suppliers with the required approvals at the time, it became
incumbent on the operators to ensure their data was accurate and safe. Now that
EAG has received approval from EASA, this means operators can be assured the
data provided by EAG has been produced to a globally-accepted standard.
Eurocontrol says that P-RNAV will
enable carriers to use area navigation functionality in all phases of flight
except during final approach or a missed approach.
allows the routes in terminal airspace to be defined to best meet the needs of
the airport, air traffic controller and pilot,” says the organisation. “This
often means shorter, more direct routes with simple connections to the en route
approval means that the suppliers’ databases comply with the European standard
known as ED-76. The US
equivalent is the Radio Technical Commission for Aeronautics’ (RTCA) document
DO-200A, which deals with standards for processing aeronautical data.