US and Europe commit to collaborate on future ATM systems

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news_a6_faaToday, an alliance of some of the largest European Air Navigation Service Providers – the A6 – and the United States’ Federal Aviation Administration have signed a Joint Statement of Purpose signalling their intention to move together towards a future interoperable aviation system that is operationally driven and technology enhanced.

Europe and the US are currently both running programmes to develop the ATM infrastructure that will help meet future safety, capacity and environmental benefits: SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research) in Europe and NextGen in the US.

The signing of this Joint Statement of Purpose (JSOP) signals an intention to seek areas of mutual interest such as systems implementation, programme management and engaging air traffic controllers in the transition to these new systems. The idea behind the JSOP is to create a forum for discussing and collaborating on future systems and sharing information and best practice on deployment. Future co-operation between A6 and the FAA will benefit the entire global aviation community.

Rick Ducharme, FAA Deputy Chief Operating Officer, Air Traffic Organisation said: “The success of global air traffic management depends on how well nations can partner in the areas of technology, procedures, operational culture and modernisation. This agreement between between the FAA and the A6 is a big step toward achieving this level of collaboration. This partnership will help us achieve a future ATM system that is operationally driven and technologically enhanced.”

Richard Deakin, NATS Chief Executive Officer and A6 Steering Board Chair said: “Aviation plays a vital role in the global economy. Creating a future ATM infrastructure that will enable us to meet traffic growth safely, efficiently and with minimal impact on the environment will benefit the entire aviation industry and beyond. Collaborating with our colleagues in the United States will ensure that the changes we are introducing on both sides of the Atlantic deliver optimal benefits to our customers and that we maximise the opportunity to share best practice and learnings.”

The A6 alliance

The A6 is a group of leading Air Navigation Service Providers in Europe with the main objective of shaping the modernisation of air navigation services. It is formed of the six ANSP members of the SESAR JU – Aena (Spain), DFS (Germany), DSNA (France), ENAV (Italy), NATS (UK) and NORACON – a consortium involving Austro Control (Austria), AVINOR (Norway), EANS (Estonia), Finavia (Finland), IAA (Ireland), LFV (Sweden) and Naviair (Denmark).

Collectively its organisations control over 70% of European air traffic and 72% of the investment in the European Air Traffic Management infrastructure of the future.


The Federal Aviation Administration is the Air Navigation Service Provider for the United States of America. The FAA is committed to reaching the next level of safety, efficiency, environmental responsibility and global leadership. To achieve this commitment the FAA is implementing the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen).