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Nigeria increases airspace safety and efficiency with SITA OnAir’s communication systems
Location: World ATM Congress, Madrid
11 March 2015

The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has selected SITA OnAir to enhance aircraft communications across Nigeria. SITA OnAir’s advanced systems will enable NAMA to comply with the recommendations of ICAO’s regional Air Navigation Plan and in doing so increase safety and efficiency in Nigerian airspace.

In this multi-year deal, SITA OnAir is supplying Controller Pilot Data Link Communication (CPDLC) and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Contract (ADS-C) solutions and services at the Lagos and Kano Control Centers to enhance long range data communication between air traffic controllers (ATC) and pilots.

Ibrahim Abdulsalam, Managing Director, NAMA, said: “SITA OnAir is already well-known for its superior VHF datalink coverage on the African continent and with its highly reliable services SITA OnAir is the ideal partner for NAMA.  The new CPDLC systems at our air traffic control centers in Lagos and Kano will move voice traffic off congested frequencies and allow for accurate data exchange between the controllers and pilots.”

With this new ADS-C capability, the agency will receive automatic position reports from aircraft to its air traffic services. This will enable NAMA to acquire surveillance information from aircraft flying outside of radar coverage.

Philip Clinch, Vice President, AIRCOM, SITA OnAir, said: “NAMA is making significant changes that will ensure increased safety while boosting Nigeria’s airspace capacity. Besides the new FANS capability, NAMA will also benefit from SITA OnAir’s connectivity and technical support.”

Future Air Navigation System (FANS) is the protocol which airlines follow to manage increasing levels of air traffic. With it, an air traffic control center (ATC) can track aircraft along their full route. When an ATC has accurate position data, and knows exactly where an aircraft is, it can reduce distances between aircraft and safely allow more in the airspace.

The use of CPDLC will improve ATC communications in Nigerian airspace. NAMA handles an average of 550 flights daily across the nation’s airports and airlines could see improvement in communication and surveillance efficiency almost immediately.

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