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US Airways, 1st Airline To Receive FAA Certification Of Safety Enhancing NextGen Applications
By Daniel Baxter

April 5, 2013 - US Airways announced that in partnership with ACSS, an L-3 Communications & Thales Company, the airline has received FAA certification on its wide-body Airbus A330 aircraft for SafeRoute, a set of four flight deck applications that will provide enhanced operational safety and efficiency in all phases of flight as part of the FAA's NextGen implementation program. US Airways is the first airline to receive certification for the combination of all four of these applications.  

The certified SafeRoute suite of applications from ACSS that US Airways will install on its A330 aircraft uses Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) technology, which provides pilots with more precise position information of the operating aircraft and other airplane traffic and is a cornerstone technology for the FAA's NextGen airspace redesign program.

It also includes Interval Management (IM), In-Trail Procedures (ITP), Cockpit display of traffic information to Assist in Visual Separation (CAVS) and Surface Area Movement Management (SAMM). Specifically, these applications will give US Airways pilots the following capabilities that will enhance operational safety and efficiency during various phases of flight:

Interval Management (IM) – makes use of onboard aircraft surveillance to provide flight deck spacing commands that enable aircraft to follow one another at the safest, most efficient interval possible, from cruise altitude to the runway.  

In-Trail Procedures (ITP) – improves situational awareness and enables flight crews to perform desired altitude changes on a more frequent basis in oceanic or non-radar airspace.  

Cockpit display of traffic information to Assist in Visual Separation (CAVS) – allows the flight crew to continue visual approach procedures using the electronic display to maintain separation if visual contact with Traffic-to-Follow is lost due to hazy or night conditions. It also assists the flight crew in properly timing the deceleration to final approach speed, configuring the aircraft for landing and properly spacing aircraft on the final approach segment just prior to landing.



Surface Area Movement Management (SAMM) – provides a moving map display of the airport surface in the cockpit that shows other traffic operating in the terminal, taxi and runway areas, dramatically improving runway safety. "A lot of time and hard work has been invested by the US Airways team, ACSS, the FAA and EUROCONTROL in reaching this milestone," said US Airways Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Robert Isom. "US Airways is proud to partner with these organizations to help demonstrate the benefits of NextGen technology, which enhances situational awareness through more precise position information, improving on what is already the safest air transportation system in the world."  

"US Airways and our other airline partners understand and embrace the opportunities and savings ADS-B provides for operators," said Terry Flaishans, president of ACSS. "Our investment in SafeRoute avionics is helping airlines operate more safely and fly the most efficient routes to their destinations." ACSS was recently honored at the ATC Global Excellence Awards in Amsterdam with the Industry Partnership of the Year award for its work with US Airways, the FAA and EUROCONTROL in delivering NextGen/ADS-B capable aircraft technology.

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