Aircraft Separation Management Using Common Information Network SAA
Achieving continual safe separation distances between all aircraft, including unmanned aerial systems (UAS), is a critical requirement for integrating UAS and manned aircraft within controlled and uncontrolled airspace. Historically, this has been achieved for manned aircraft in controlled airspace by ground controllers mandating conservative safety volumes and strict flight plan adherence rules. Potential violations of these volumes can be determined if all aircraft in the controlled airspace are being tracked. If the safety volumes are in danger of being violated by an intruder, air traffic control (ATC) officers can request aircraft trajectory adjustments (usually issued by voice commands). This manual process may take from tens of seconds to minutes depending on: (i) the human controller workload; (ii) the ATC service available; (iii) the availability of decision support tools; (iv) the surveillance equipment such as the radar update rate; (v) the number of aircraft in conflict; and (vi) the time it takes for pilots to manually implement changes. This relatively large airspace control latency manifests itself in the application of correspondingly large en-route desired safe horizontal separation distances between aircraft in controlled airspace. A typical value for en-route safe separation is 5 nautical miles, although ...