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On the Impact of UAS Contingencies on ATC Operations in Shared Airspace

Teutsch, Jürgen and Petersen, Co C. and Schwoch, Gunnar and Bos, Tanja and Lieb, Joonas and Zon, Rolf (2023) On the Impact of UAS Contingencies on ATC Operations in Shared Airspace. ICNS 2023, 18-20 Apr 2023, Westin Washington Dulles Airport, USA.

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In the near future, it is expected that an increasing number of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) will operate at very low level altitudes of up to 500 ft in urban and suburban areas. These new airspace users will have to share the available airspace with manned traffic, and dynamic airspace re-configuration (DAR) has been considered as one of the enablers for the integration of unmanned and manned traffic in non-segregated airspace. The Royal Netherlands Aerospace Centre, NLR, together with their partners from the German Aerospace Centre, DLR, carried out simulations for the SESAR Industrial Research Project AURA that investigates requirements for an interface between ATM controlled airspace and so-called U-space. U-space is a set of highly automated services and specific procedures designed to provide safe, efficient and secure access to airspace for large numbers of unmanned aircraft, operating automatically and beyond the visual line of sight. To this end, AURA defined the so-called AUSA, ATM U-space Shared Airspace, which must be seen as a generic type of airspace that can be delegated to contain both ATC controlled and U-space controlled airspace volumes. The simulations carried out by NLR and DLR investigated U-space contingencies that could have an impact on those parts of the shared airspace controlled by ATC. This includes specific U-space user missions and related emergency and other contingency situations that would require an extension of U-space into ATC controlled airspace. NLR defined different drone missions in the vicinity of Rotterdam The Hague Airport on the NARSIM validation platform. A tower controller and an approach controller worked within this environment. DLR operated both a real drone at their National UAS Test Centre in Cochstedt, Germany, and a drone simulator at their premises in Braunschweig in order to carry out the drone missions with high fidelity. For this experiment, the role of a manager for Dynamic Airspace Re-configuration processes was introduced. The DAR Manager received contingency requests from U-space and negotiated them with air traffic control. Both the tower and approach controller communicated with the DAR Manager to find a solution for the contingency situations that occurred during the drone missions. The DAR Manager had the possibility to visualize and change the contingency airspace reconfiguration request and, if several options were available, select the most appropriate reconfiguration option. Airspace changes were then communicated to the affected controllers via a dedicated interface showing the delegated U-space airspace with indications of altitude constraints and activation status and times inside the ATC controlled airspace. Preliminary results have shown that the additional DAR Manager role and working position supported and improved air traffic control operations. Negotiations between the DAR Manager and air traffic controllers, however, will only be possible if there is enough lead time - in the range of several minutes - to prepare for airspace changes. Emergency requests that require immediate action should be communicated to the affected controllers immediately by the system.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/192424/
Document Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Speech)
Title:On the Impact of UAS Contingencies on ATC Operations in Shared Airspace
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Schwoch, GunnarUNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-7507-7131UNSPECIFIED
Refereed publication:No
Open Access:No
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:No
Keywords:Traffic Management (ATM, UTM, STM); CNS for UAS and UAS Applications
Event Title:ICNS 2023
Event Location:Westin Washington Dulles Airport, USA
Event Type:international Conference
Event Dates:18-20 Apr 2023
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Aeronautics
HGF - Program Themes:Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research area:Aeronautics
DLR - Program:L AI - Air Transportation and Impact
DLR - Research theme (Project):L - Integrated Flight Guidance
Location: Braunschweig
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Flight Guidance > Unmanned Aircraft Systems
Deposited By: Schwoch, Gunnar
Deposited On:26 Apr 2023 09:47
Last Modified:28 Nov 2023 11:32

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