Eurocontrol: Traffic growth in Warsaw urges for system transition

Over the last 5 years Warsaw has experienced significant traffic growth well above the European average. The ATC system upgrade planned at Warsaw ATC centre in November 2013 will handle the growth and be more flexible in its future operations.
The European Football Championship tested the ability of Poland to meet the challenge of increased traffic levels. Although this event was extremely well managed, it confirmed the view that current system capabilities were reaching their limits and that delays could increase significantly.
The need for a more performant FDPS system in Warsaw has been felt for a number of years and the urgency has become evident since the summer. Failures of the Flight Data Processing System in July were due to its inability to process flight plans above certain parameters.
Upon request of PANSA, the Network Manager has implemented operational procedures to ensure that the capacity limits of the Flight Data Processing System (FDPS) be protected by limiting the number of active flight plans in the Warsaw ATC system.
This is achieved by re-routeing traffic out of Polish airspace when an excess of demand is expected. In addition, a number of flight planning restrictions are also used to complement the ATFCM measures when required on the busiest days.
Such re-routing measures undoubtedly affect specific traffic flows more than others. All efforts have been made to ensure an equitable distribution of the measures. Regular contact, including teleconferences, is being maintained with the airlines, particularly via our Aircraft Operator Liaison Cell in the Operations Centre.
Timely and welcome transition
Thus the new system upgrades planned for November 2013 are a timely and welcome development.
The Network Manager is working closely with PANSA to establish robust plans to ensure a smooth and safe transition, incl. simulations and delay mitigation scenarios.
The proactive collaboration between PANSA and the Network Manager has ensured that the current limitations of the Warsaw ACC FDPS can be correctly managed while minimising adverse impact on flight operations. These procedures will be included in possible mitigation measures to support the upcoming transition.
“NM is confident that a robust transition plan is in preparation to ensure successful deployment of the new system and the subsequent airspace changes and staffing plan will result in major capacity gains”, said Joe Sultana, Director Network Manager, back from a visit to PANSA.
For more information, you can contact: Razvan Bucuroiu, Head of Operations Planning, Network Manager Directorate

Source / Author: Eurocontrol