AAL2 aiming to boost low visibility access

A consortium of key aviation stakeholders has come together to launch the AAL2 initiative to demonstrate augmented approach and landing operations.

Building on the successful and award-winning SESAR Augmented Approaches to Land (AAL) project, AAL2 – whose member include including airports, airspace users, airframe manufacturers, avionics manufacturers and regulatory bodies – will work on the following SESAR solutions over the next two years until 2021:

  • GBAS (Ground Based Augmentation System) CAT II with CAT I airborne and ground equipment, enabling lower decision heights to CAT II minima (DH 100ft) (addresses hubs and medium size airports)
  • EFVS (Enhanced Flight Vision System) to Land using Head Up /or Mounted Display, with operational credit down to 300 meters RVR in non- CAT II/III airports (addresses medium and small size airports)

AAL2 will provide important benefits, including improved accessibility in congested, low visibility conditions – complementing currently limited systems – to pave the way for the uptake of technologies required to overcome limitations of the current Instrument Landing System (ILS) equipment. This will contribute to ATM modernisation by speeding up deployment. The AAL consortium includes:

  • 5 small/medium sized airports: Antwerp, Le Bourget, Payerne, Bremen, Perigueux;
  • 2 large airports: Frankfurt and Newark;
  • 6 airspace users : HOP!, EBAA, Lufthansa Group, Ryanair, Flying Group, and Zurich Insurance;
  • 4 ANSPs: Belgocontrol, DFS, DSNA and Skyguide;
  • 3 airframe manufacturers : Airbus, ATR, Dassault-Aviation;
  • 2 avionics manufacturers : Honeywell, ELBIT;
  • 7 regulatory bodies: BAF (German CAA), BCAA (Belgium CAA), DGAC (French CAA), EASA, FOCA (Swiss CAA), IAA (Irish CAA), LBA (German CAA);
  • 3 European or intergovernmental organisations: EASA, ESSP, Eurocontrol;
  • 1 Instrument Flight Procedure Expert: DLR.

AAL2 builds on AAL, a project which developed and demonstrated several augmented approach procedures for small and medium-sized airports, using advanced procedures based on four different technologies: Ground and Satellite-based Augmentation System (GBAS/SBAS Advanced), Synthetic Vision Guidance System (SVGS), Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS).
The aim of the project was to pave the way for the uptake of these technologies, which are needed to overcome the limitations of the current ILS – equipment which is costly to install and maintain, and which can only guide straightforward approaches by aircraft.
AAL saw 15 partners from across the aviation sector working closely together to deliver one of the most ambitious large-scale demonstrations in Europe. It demonstrated, through some 360 trial flights, that satellite-based navigation and augmented vision can improve access and reduce the impact of airspace users on the environment.
In cooperation with its AAL2 consortium partners, European business aviation industry body EBAA said it was excited to create clear benefits, such as improved accessibility, alleviating airport and airspace traffic particularly in congested, low-visibility conditions and provide better connectivity throughout the European airspace.