Airbus Subsidiary to implement RNAV in the Philippines

As it adopt Performance Based Navigation (PBN) System

June 25, 2011

Airbus S.A.S. subsidiary Quovadis, an Air Navigation Service (ANS) provider announced recently at the Paris Airshow that it will develop full PBN network of 11 major airports in the Philippines.

The project is a cooperation program between the French Civil Aviation Authority (DGAC) and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP).

The Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) concept allows for the optimization of the instrument procedure through the aircraft navigation performance, without the need for ground aids.

PBN allows an aircraft to fly precisely along a predefined route using a Global Positioning System (GPS). This concept is used en route, and can reduce aircraft separation, including the terminal area, and used to optimize arrival and departure procedures.

The program is jointly sponsored by the French DGAC, the French Civil Aviation University (ENAC), Airbus S.A.S. and Philippine based airline operators, namely Philippine Airlines, Cebu Pacific Air, Airphil Express and Zest Airways.

The major airport radars that will be upgraded with the next-generation air-traffic management system are Manila, Puerto Princesa, Zamboanga, Butuan, Dumaguete, Legaspi, Iloilo, Clark, Bacolod, Tacloban, Cagayan de Oro Kalibo, Laoag and Subic.

Quovadis, will design the “approach procedures” in Puerto Princesa, Zamboanga, Iloilo, Butuan, Dumaguete and Legaspi, while other airports would be designed by CAAP.

The current aviation navigation procedures in the country require aircraft to use ground-based navigation system, such as the distance-measuring equipment, very high-frequency omnidirectional range and radar.

With the advent of the new navigational aids, planes will now be able to use the so-called aeronautical highway, an invisible tracks or radials in the sky more accurately until they reach their destinations.

The PBN does away with such tracks or radials, which zig-zag in the sky, following predetermined routes as defined by the navigational aids.

The project also includes On-The-Job procedure design and obstacles data survey trainings by ENAC and CGx AERO in SYS, but also PBN training for Air Traffic Controllers and Flight Safety Inspectors.

Caap Director General Ramon Gutierrez said the trainings aims to consolidate CAAP skills and knowledge for a safe and efficient PBN implementation.

The GPS based navigation technique, coupled with on-board systems, allows optimizing the use of airspace, provides fully stabilized and managed approaches, therefore significantly improving safety but also reduces costs by shortening tracks and lowering weather minima.

“the PBN concept matches perfectly with the needs of the country" says Gutierrez.

Gutierrez added that "CAAP is fully committed to intensively develop PBN as per ICAO recommendations. We are pleased to cooperate with Quovadis in this project as they have the right expertise and experience in supporting the States in their PBN implementation. RNP approaches will also bring airspace management improvement and operators will benefit from operational savings.”

Quovadis and its partners will develop regulatory and operational approval process including obstacle data survey, procedure design and validation, Air Traffic Management and operators approval for CAAP.

"We are glad to be part of this initiative and to make the Philippine airspace one of the most PBN advanced in the world." Sebastien Borel, Head of Sales and Marketing at Quovadis said.

“This unique alliance of authorities, Air Navigation Services Providers and operators, is a true breakthrough in the industry” says Paul Franck Bijou, CEO of Quovadis.

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