FAREHAM, England, September 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
A consortium led by communications and information technology company Harris Corporation - which includes NATS' American subsidiary, NATS Inc - has won the $331 million FAA Data Communication Integrated Services (DCIS) contract.
The seven year contract, with 10 additional one-year options, represents a major step in the Next Generation Air Transportation System - known as NextGen.
Delivery of the DCIS contract will allow air traffic service data to be transmitted directly to pilots via an aircraft's on-board avionics systems. This represents a key phase of the transition from the current decades-old analogue voice system to a predominantly digital mode of communication.
By enabling data communication, DCIS will support more efficient procedures and flight profiles through services such as revised departure clearances, automation of routine clearances, Traffic Flow Management reroutes, automated transfer of communications, optimised profile descents, and trajectory-based operations.
These advances will contribute towards enhanced air safety, reduced delays, increased fuel savings and improved environmental performance.
"DCIS lays the groundwork for the move from traditional air traffic control to more active air traffic management," said John O'Sullivan, vice president, Mission Critical Networks, Harris Government Communications Systems.
NATS Inc is the US subsidiary of the UK's leading provider of air traffic services and solutions. It will support Harris Corporation's Government Communications Systems business through the development of new operational procedures and in communicating the goals and benefits of DCIS to airlines and stakeholders.
Paul Reid, NATS' Managing Director, Services, said: "This latest contract win helps further consolidate NATS' position in the US market and we are delighted to be working with Harris Corporation to deliver this vital NextGen project. I firmly believe that our world class reputation for safety, engineering expertise and ability to deliver, has been instrumental to helping win this contract."
This latest win builds upon a series of international contracts for NATS, including airspace redesign in Singapore, capacity enhancement and design in Qatar, consulting in Hong Kong and the Aena ATC tower contract in Spain.
NATS is now working in 28 countries around the world, with staff based in the USA, Spain, the Middle East, and Hong Kong.
Note to editors:
NATS is the UK's leading provider of Air Traffic Management (ATM) services, handling 2.2 million flights in 2011/12, covering the UK and eastern North Atlantic.
NATS provides air traffic control from centres at Swanwick, Hampshire and Prestwick, Ayrshire.
NATS also provides air traffic control services at 15 of the nation's major airports including Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow, together with air traffic services at Gibraltar Airport.