Swiss company Skyguide provides safe and reliable air navigation services to clients, and is increasingly reliant on European GNSS.
According to Dr. Marc Troller of the CNS expert group for Skyguide, satellite navigation enables instrument-based flying independent of ground-based navigation installations. “The intention is to change from conventional navigation to GNSS,” says Dr. Troller. He further notes that this switch to GNSS is also be useful for helicopter operators, who will be able to operate irrespective of the weather as long as their helicopters are appropriately equipped and certified and their pilots have the necessary training.
Skyguide launched CHIPS, a Swiss-wide programme to implement new technologies such as GNSS-based operations, which is a huge innovation for Swiss aviation. “We are proceeding very well,” says Troller. “We have implemented all of the possible applications and technologies of GNSS/PBN by at least one procedure at most of the airports in Switzerland.” He notes that new helicopter procedures have also been implemented.
To this end, Skyguide launched the GNSS Low Flight Network project in close collaboration with the Swiss Air Force and Rega, the Swiss helicopter emergency medical service. The GNSS Low Flight Network links aerodromes with IFR procedures and hospitals and heliports with point-in-space procedures. The route sits in ECHO class airspace, which is below the existing airway system. These low flight altitudes minimise the risk of helicopter rotors icing.
“Skyguide pushes GNSS in order to optimally exploit the limited airspace resource and consequently increase flexibility and capacity while reducing the costs,” explains Dr. Troller. “The signal is more accurate, meaning more sophisticated flight operations are possible, especially in mountainous terrain.”
Reliability and innovation are cornerstones of Skyguide’s work. The company provides accurate, safe and reliable air navigation to customers and partners, and forces value-adding solutions and the use of innovative technologies to continuously improve its services. At the same time, it aims to be cost effective and sustainable. Through implementing GNSS, Skyguide can offer an affordable, accurate, innovative service to client – from the military to aircraft or helicopter operators.
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