Air Traffic Control

For my money the advent of flight data processing and the revolution in capacity and safety it has brought about absolutely deserves its moment in the spotlight in the history of air traffic control. Modern aviation simply wouldn’t exist without it.   

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There is no doubt that radio was a game-changer for the first generation of airline pilots. Instead of flying ‘blind’, radio offered pilots the support of a dedicated team of people on the ground tasked with helping them safely reach their destination. It’s a relationship that persists to this day. 

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Video calls on Skype, Teams and Zoom have become a part of life over the past few months, so while we wait for the day we can all fly again, here are a few air traffic control related backgrounds for your next call – perfect for any avgeek! And if you’re not sure how to […]

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For #WorldSleepDay we spoke to our air traffic controllers about the importance of a good night’s sleep and working around the challenges of shift work.

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To celebrate International Women’s Day this Sunday 8 March and the 100th anniversary year for air traffic control, we are giving 100 lucky winners the opportunity to win a NATS goody bag, featuring one of our commemorative retro patches.  

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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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On 24 June 1948, ground access to the French, British and American zones of Berlin was cut off by the Soviet forces in East Germany. On 26 June, the first airlift flights departed for West Berlin. Over the following fourteen months over two million people were supplied with food, medicine, clothing, fuel, water and any other necessities by air.

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Operation Overlord, arguably remains one of the most complex tasks ever devised: 160,000 troops (of which 24,000 landed by glider or parachute), 5,000 vessels and 11,000 individual aircraft took part. While obviously bearing no relation to each other, today’s air traffic operation can trace some roots back to that day and to similar operations in preceding years.

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