US and European aviation
authorities and operators are planning at least two collaborative environmental
tests next year to gather operational data on emissions- and fuel-reducing
procedures and technologies.
surface operations trial at John F. Kennedy International Airport
in New York in
the second or third quarter of 2008 will be the first event.
trial is held under the auspices of the Atlantic Interoperability initiative to
Reduce Emissions (AIRE), a European and US
partnership to implement near-term gate-to-gate reductions in emissions and fuel
with the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the European Commission’s
Single European Sky ATM [air traffic management] Research (SESAR) program in
the effort are a variety of airlines, including Delta Air Lines, Air France,
FedEx, KLM and Virgin Atlantic.
JFK, the test will centre on the airport’s new Airport Surface Detection Radar,
Model X (ASDE-X) surveillance system, slated to be operational by June, as a
tool to optimize ground movements and departures to reduce fuel burned and
emissions produced in the airport vicinity.
“flexible track” test scheduled to start mid-third quarter, also under the AIRE
program, will give participating airlines on flights between Europe and Miami
more freedom to modify routes and altitudes to minimize both travel time and fuel
reports that fuel burn on average can increase as much as 110kg per 100nm if
altitudes are as little as 1,815m (6,000ft) below the optimum cruise level. US
airlines in the flexible track test include American Airlines and UPS.