Avinor selects Sensis ADS-B for helicopter surveillance
Avinor AS, the Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP) for Norway, has selected Sensis Corporation to deploy an Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) system for the surveillance of helicopter traffic serving oil and gas platforms in the Norwegian part of the North Sea. Sensis ADS-B's highly accurate surveillance will enhance safety of flights by providing air traffic controllers with greater situational awareness as well as critical data for search and rescue.
Presently the Ekofisk airspace, with over 160,000 annual helicopter passengers served by Stavanger Airport, uses Avinor's Modified - Automatic Dependent Surveillance (a propriety system that employs GPS and a geostationary satellite communications link) and partial radar coverage to provide Flight Information Service and Alerting Service. With the Sensis ADS-B deployment, the airspace will be upgraded to support Air Traffic Control Service with a minimum separation of five nautical miles. The ADS-B system will consist of a number of ground stations established at both offshore and onshore installations. The ADS-B technology complements the surface multilateration surveillance system Sensis is delivering to Bergen Airport.
"Enhancing the safety of helicopter traffic in these busy areas is of highest importance to Avinor," said Knut Skaar, Chief Executive Avinor ANS. "Sensis delivered the economically most advantageous tender for the delivery of said systems, and based upon the company's technical solution and proven track record in deploying oil and gas platform surveillance systems, we believe that the Sensis' solution also will contribute to Avinor's continuous efforts in order to improve safety."
Sensis pioneered the development and implementation of ADS-B, fielding the first operational ADS-B transceivers for both the Mode S Extended Squitter (1090 ES) and Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) datalinks. All Sensis ADS-B transceivers are also capable of transponder multilateration, enabling independent verification of ADS-B data and serving as an auxiliary system. Sensis ADS-B provides ASTERIX CAT21 output, fully meeting all ED-129 requirements.
"Sensis is the industry's proven leader in delivering next generation surveillance systems in one of the world's the toughest environments - offshore oil and gas platforms," said Ken Kaminski, vice president and general manager of Sensis Air Traffic Systems. "The ADS-B system will provide Avinor air traffic controllers with highly accurate location and identification of helicopter flights at all times to improve safety and provide precise location information in the event of search and rescue operations."
Sensis established the use of ADS-B for tracking of flights in an offshore oil and gas platform environment through the NASA Helicopter In-flight Tracking System programme in 2001. In 2010, the company's Wide Area Multilateration (WAM) system for NATS in the North Sea became the industry's first certified, operational WAM system for offshore surveillance of helicopter traffic.
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