First flight supported by pre-flight 4D-trajectory data exchange performed by Lufthansa in the European Network

Today, the first flight ever supported by pre-flight 4D-trajectory data exchange took place in Europe flying from Munich to Hamburg.

The EUROCONTROL Network Manager (NM), Lufthansa Airline and Lufthansa Systems closely cooperated on this important milestone towards the implementation of FF-ICE (Flight and Flow Information for a Collaborative Environment) – a modern concept facilitating collaborative decision making through information sharing and 4-dimensional trajectory negotiation pre-flight.

When flying in European airspace, airspace users must submit a flight plan to the EUROCONTROL Network Manager’s operations centre. For this unique flight, Lufthansa submitted the flight plan to the EUROCONTROL Network Manager’s operational system sharing for the first time such an optimised set of data allowing operational stakeholders to see in advance a very precise trajectory. This is a steppingstone for the European ATM transformation towards Trajectory Based Operations and Aircraft Operators flight optimisation through improved collaborative flight planning. In the future, flights supported by pre-flight 4D-trajectory data exchange will make air traffic predictions more accurate and pave the way to more efficient, sustainable operations within the European Network benefitting all aviation partners.

Lufthansa Systems has been developing this new functionality for Lido Flight 4D IFS for quite some time, as part of a SESAR Deployment Manager initiative. This has transpired in close collaboration with Air Navigation Service Providers like DFS Aviation Services, the EUROCONTROL Network Manager, Air France and Lufthansa.

FF-ICE – which is a global ATM concept developed at ICAO level – will have global applicability and will support members of the international ATM community to achieve significant performance benefits. FF-ICE defines information requirements for flight planning, flow management and trajectory management and aims to be a cornerstone of the performance-based air navigation system. Flight information and associated trajectories are principal mechanisms by which ATM service delivery will meet operational requirements.