Fast flight times in new air traffic controllers’ deal
March 10th, 2011 by elisa

European air traffic controllers have signed an agreement which will lead to a single, unified airspace by combining the technology of each country’s control systems. This deal will lead to less fuel consumption, faster travel times and lower flying costs.

At the moment, countries control their own air space which can mean different pre-determined routes which will slow some flight times. Planes often have to zigzag across Europe to avoid certain no-fly zones and military airspace for example. The Single European Sky will see planes able to travel through countries in a more direct fashion, which could save the 10% fuel sometimes burned on less logical routes.

To ensure maximum safety the new routes will initially be used during the least busy hours of the night, but by the end of the year, they will also be used during weekends.

BAA air side director Tim Hardy said: “With aviation playing such a critical role in supporting international economic growth, it is vital we do everything we can to improve operational efficiency, improve punctuality and reduce both costs and carbon emissions.

“Modernising Europe’s airspace so aircraft can fly more direct routes using less fuel makes perfect sense and we are delighted that it is moving one step to becoming reality.”

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