Understanding ATC

Both London and Scottish Flight Information Services (FIS) provide assistance to General Aviation (GA), Military and Commercial Aircraft within the Class G airspace, outside of controlled airspace, covering the whole of the UK. Pilots don’t have to call and use the service, but here’s some information on why we think you should consider it….

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At NATS we believe increasing diversity in engineering is vital for several reasons, not least because we need to expand the pool of engineering talent (both male and female) as our needs evolve, but also because we have some truly ground-breaking developments on the horizon.

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As the flying season is now well underway, we thought we’d provide a deeper look over the coming weeks, at some of the services that are available to pilots. Today we’re starting with the Lower Airspace Radar Service (LARS).

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Last month we launched Airspace Explorer, our flight tracking and airspace education app and as such, I’ve been digging into how our airspace is made up and how it remains the foundation of our aviation industry. Today I’m looking at airspace classifications, the differences between them and what they mean for the people who fly through them.

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NATS manages UK airspace from our two centres – one in Swanwick and the other in Prestwick, Ayrshire – and the air traffic controllers who work there use radar to safely guide aircraft that might be hundreds of miles away.

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Last week we launched Airspace Explorer, our beta app that uses real radar data to track aircraft in the UK. One of the things we want to achieve was to highlight the importance and structure of our airspace – the invisible and hidden road network in the sky in which our controllers manage flows of air traffic.

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Earlier today we announced the launch of our beta flight tracking app, Airspace Explorer and I wanted to share with you some of my favourite features.

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Aircraft are hit by lightning far more frequently than you might think and, although this could cause serious damage and result in lengthy delays, most of the time it goes completely unnoticed.

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Here at Abertay University we love making games and that’s what makes Gamejams so appealing, even more so when NATS laid down a challenge to us.

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If you’re reading this at your desk in a warm office, spare a thought for the NATS engineers who are exposed to the elements, all year round working to keep the skies safe.

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    4000 Parkway
    Whiteley
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    Hants
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