Europe's SESAR air traffic management system is more likely to be implemented than the US NextGen because Europe has a much greater sense of urgency, claims Rockwell Collins chief Clay Jones.

Funding and political will are holding adoption of NextGen back, he says: "There is no invention that needs to take place. We can move at any speed that the money is [made] available."

While an implementation plan has been agreed, government budget deficits and "bickering" over costs mean expectations of system maturity by 2025 are certain to be disappointed unless the federal government steps in to set a firm timetable in which investors can have confidence.

If this is forthcoming, Clay hopes to see a combination of government and private investment provide the $40 billion needed for NextGen - some $20 billion for infrastructure and the same for aircraft systems.

Source: Flight International