(19 Mar 2021)
Cyprus is set to become the first country in
southeastern Europe to implement Controller Pilot Data Link
Communications (CPDLC) using ATN/VDL-M2 technology, from October
air traffic control (ATC) standard uses digital messages
instead of voice communications for routine airspace clearances.
The Cyprus Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) and
Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA) have chosen SITA’s ATC
Datalink Services to support the operation of
CPDLC in Cyprus’ airspace, which covers a land and sea surface of
Pre-COVID19, Cyprus recorded 412,000 aircraft
movements per year in its airspace.
DCA’s Haris Antoniades, Head of Area Control
Center Nicosia, said, “SITA provides complete VHF coverage of our
airspace, including the maritime area, and ensures that the
air/ground data exchange meets the stringent performance
requirements of modern ATC operations. The new set-up allows
dynamic routing of ATC messages between Cyprus’ ground control
center and aircraft flying in the Cyprus airspace or its vicinity.
In terms of CPDLC compliance, we are closing an important gap in
SITA operates 2,000 Very High Frequency (VHF) and
VHF Data Link (VDL) radio stations globally, and more than 90 air
navigation service providers use its global network or systems.
To cover Cyprus’ airspace, SITA is adding two new
VDLm2 ground stations in Larnaca and Paphos to its existing VHF
SITA is also supplying the ATN (Aeronautical
Telecommunication Network) ground router (based on Thales’ ProATN)
and connecting to its AIRCOM ATC services via the pan-European NewPENS ATC network.
Sébastien Fabre, CEO SITA for Aircraft, said,
“By deploying SITA’s ATN/VDL-M2 solution, the Cyprus Department of
Civil Aviation is using the best option for a seamless CPDLC
service – and for complying with the European Implementing Rule on
Data Link Services. VHF/VDL still is, and will remain for the
foreseeable future, the most suitable technology to provide
high-availability, high-performance, and cost-efficient ATC data
CPDLC is a means of communication between air
traffic controllers and pilots to exchange routine ATC clearance
messages in digital format. Controllers can issue clearances
(e.g., flight level and speed assignments), assign radio
frequencies, and request information. Pilots, via their cockpit
display, can respond to the messages or request information
The two-way data link system CPDLC enhances
safety, as messages are unequivocal and sent only to the intended
aircraft, avoiding potential voice-related misunderstandings.
CPDLC reduces the volume of traditional ATC voice communications,
freeing the latter one up for urgent messages, and controllers can
handle more pilot requests simultaneously. According to a
Eurocontrol study, the use of CPDLC can reduce controller workload
by 29% and increase the airspace capacity by 11%.
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