Pardubice, Czech Republic December 20th, 2011 — ERA a.s.,(ERA) announced today that its Wide Area Multilateration (WAM) system deployed across Namibia achieved operational status. The WAM system was certified according to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) as safe and capable of supporting aircraft separations as low as 10 nautical miles across Namibian air space.
At an inauguration ceremony held on December 7th in Windhoek, Namibia’s President, His Excellence Dr. Hifikepunye Pohamba, declared the system commissioned and fully operational. The ERA system is completely with Thales’ Eurocat-X ATM system as the primary surveillance source. Prior to the deployment of the new ATM system Namibian airspace was managed exclusively by radio communication and aircraft were separated by ICAO procedural separation standards. With the new surveillance system aircraft are now separated by 10 nautical miles. The system is capable to handle a reduced separation of about 5 nautical miles within the Terminal Control Area provided the runway is served by rapid exit taxi way.
The system deployed by ERA under contract with Thales is the largest such system in the world consisting of 36 ground stations deployed across the entire country. Tobias Günzel, Deputy Director: Aviation, Administration and Navigation for the Namibian Civil Aviation Directorate said “As a result of the WAM system performance we have already begun to deploy an extension of the WAM system around Walvis Bay and in Caprivi with additional extensions being contemplated to provide WAM redundancy for Hosea Kutako International Airport as well as Eros Airport. This would increase the number of ground stations to fifty four”. Neighboring countries may also form part of the existing WAM system of Namibia to get WAM coverage reaching across country borders.
Vladislav Hofman, Managing Director of ERA stated that “This achievement in Namibia will go down as a milestone in the history of the development of multilateration as an essential element of next generation surveillance. ERA is proud to have been a part of the consortium of vendors responsible for the success of such a significant project.”
About Namibian Civil Aviation Administration
The Aviation Administration & Navigation Division is responsible for the installation, maintenance, renewal, calibration and modification of all radio navigation, communications and instrument landing systems required for safe and expedient air traffic operations in the Namibian air space. Deputy Director Mr. T. Günzel oversaw and managed the entire project for the division. Victor Likando the Chief Air Traffic Controller (CATCO) of Namibia mentioned that he is indeed privileged and honoured to manage Air Traffic Control in Namibia, having the latest technology in the world, which enhances safety in Air traffic management.
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