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Air Traffic Management and Future Technology: The Views of the Controllers
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Economics and Management (Dept.), Industrial Work Science.
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Industrial Economics and Management (Dept.), Industrial Work Science.
2006 (English)In: Human Factors and Aerospace Safety, ISSN 1468-9456, Vol. 6, no 1, 1-16 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Technological innovations have the potential to resolve airspace capacity problems and improve communications, but will undoubtedly change the routines and work content of humans in the system. This study examines what the introduction of new technologies will mean to air traffic controllers in terms of their future roles and areas of responsibility. To complement earlier simulation work, exploratory interviews were conducted with 22 European air traffic controllers. Results show that most controllers have a positive view on new technology such as automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast and cockpit displays of traffic information, but emphasize the need for supporting procedures, training and a user-centered design process. Respondents also highlighted the importance of retaining voice communication because of its effortless handling.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 6, no 1, 1-16 p.
Keyword [en]
Aviation; Operations and Traffic Management; Safety and Human Factors
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics Computer and Information Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-12327OAI: diva2:309699
QC 20100408Available from: 2010-04-08 Created: 2010-04-08 Last updated: 2011-02-07Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Who is responsible?: Communication, coordination and collaboration in the future Air Traffic Management system
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Who is responsible?: Communication, coordination and collaboration in the future Air Traffic Management system
2007 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

nternational civil aviation has experienced a steady growth in the past decades that is foreseen to continue. To overcome capacity limits of the old Air Traffic Control systems, new technology is currently being developed and introduced. While the current way of conducting air traffic has evolved in a continuous manner, the new technologies are part of a new paradigm that has the potential to completely reform aviation. Under this paradigm, it is envisaged that pilots may engage in surveillance tasks, which poses new demands on coordination between controllers and pilots.

This thesis describes basic properties of current and new technology and procedures within civil aviation and the relation to distribution of tasks and responsibilities between pilots and controllers. It is recognised that the current distribution is largely based on the development of technological tools. As new technology allows information in the aviation system to be shared to much greater extent than in the present operational environment, it implies that the basis for present task allocation between controllers and pilots may be challenged. For new technology to be viable, appropriate procedures must be developed to assure safety within the air traffic system.

To gain wide insight into current aviation, a multitude of data-collection methods have been applied including interviews, observations, and simulations. Interviews have been performed with controllers from several European countries. Observations have been performed in operational Air Traffic Control as well as operational flight. Observations have also been performed in simulations where some applications of the new technology have been investigated. Questionnaires were distributed to both pilots and controllers in a real-time simulation investigating Free Flight issues.

Results show that operational activity is characterised by a large degree of flexibility. In some applications of new technology, certain tools and procedures have been identified that have been regarded inflexible. It is emphasised that continued development should be performed in international cooperation and introduced into operation gradually to minimise shortfalls of training.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2007. xiv, 93 p.
Trita-IEO, ISSN 1100-7982 ; 2007:8
Air Traffic Management, Aviation, CNS/ATM, Controller-Pilot Communication, Responsibility, Future Air Navigation System
National Category
Vehicle Engineering
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-4496 (URN)978-91-7178-765-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2007-10-12, Sal F3, KTH, Lindstedtsvägen 26, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
QC 20100408Available from: 2007-09-25 Created: 2007-09-25 Last updated: 2010-05-17Bibliographically approved

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