NATS Blog

Here our people share their insights, views and expertise on the world of Air Traffic Management. We cover a broad range of topics from discussing technology and practices today to sharing visions of a potential tomorrow.

For more than 15 years, NATS has been closely involved with CHIRP, an organisation set up in 1982 to provide a totally independent, confidential reporting facility for members of the aviation and maritime community, with the aim of contributing to the enhancement of safety in these industries.

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We’ve created Plane Talking, an amazing new visualisation that focuses on just one single flight amongst the thousands we handle on a daily basis, offering a wonderful insight into the dedication and professionalism that sits behind every one.

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Every Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday, air traffic controllers across the country play their part in the national commemoration by ensuring the two minutes of silence is as complete as possible.

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In March 2019 NATS won approval to use ADS-B to provide a full radar service for helicopter operations in the North Sea. This is the first approval of its kind allowing the use of ADS-B to this level in the UK.

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NATS hobbyist drone user, Krishan Singhal, has completed our new online hobbyist drone course – we asked him to share his first impressions:

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Zoe, who is currently training with NATS as an Engineering Technician, tells us a bit more about her role at Britain’s biggest and busiest international airport…

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We’ve been working with European partners on several solutions to increase airspace capacity and cost efficiency; improve safety and predictability and provide greater fuel efficiency and environmental sustainability.  We are testing a new systemised airspace management tool (SYSMAN) and how it interacts with queue management systems especially Arrival Manager (AMAN), and Airport Demand Capacity Balancing (Airport-DCB).

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From 28 March to the 31 August over 4,400 more flights were assigned their requested level when compared to 2018, meaning our trial performance is already indicating noteworthy fuel burn and environmental improvements.

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We’ve come a long way since the days when our main association with wind farm developers was to object to their developments because of the impact they had on our radar navigation and communications infrastructure.

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The summer of 2019 has been record breaking across the European aviation network with a record 37,228 flights handled on 28 June. And the European ATM community has been standing shoulder-to-shoulder to deliver efficient and effective air travel during the region’s busiest period.

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