Nordic Unified Air Traffic Control takes over Danish/Swedish airspace

Sweden and Denmark combined their air navigation services earlier this month through the jointly owned company Nordic Unified Air Traffic Control (NUAC).

NUAC has been certified as a provider of air traffic services and has taken over the en route operations previously provided by Naviair (Denmark) and LFV (Sweden) in the Danish/Swedish functional airspace block (FAB). It is the first integrated air navigation services provider (ANS) in Europe to provide services to an FAB. Advantages touted include a range of synergies that will benefit airlines, passengers and the environment.

NUAC was formed as a joint Naviair/LFV subsidiary in 2009, the same year the DK/SE FAB was declared. At the beginning of 2011, it began providing operational support to the Copenhagen, Stockholm and Malmö air traffic control centers, and now spearheads harmonization initiatives within the FAB.

LFV director general Thomas Allard said: “FABs utilize the accessible airspace to the optimum … and we are convinced that increased collaboration over national borders is the future of aviation.”

By December, all 27 European Union member states must have an FAB strategy in place, comprising agreements between two or more countries that specify joint use of the airspace. Air navigation services within those FABs can be provided nationally or by a jointly owned enterprise. In the UK-Ireland FAB, for example, services are provided in joint airspace by the independent ANSPs of the two countries: Sweden and Denmark have combined their ANSPs in a joint effort.

Chairman of the NUAC board and CEO of Naviair Morten Dambæk said: “The objective of NUAC is first and foremost to provide the most safe, efficient and inexpensive operation of air traffic in the Danish-Swedish area. We are also engaged in implementing efficiency improvements, which will reduce air navigation services costs in Denmark and Sweden by at least €13 million ($16.4 million). Add to this that we generate an environmental gain through more efficient air traffic control. The flight routes will be shorter and the airlines will save fuel and will emit less CO2.”

LFV’s Allard said: “Our objective is to have accomplished the efficiency improvements in the new company completely prior to 2016.”
ATW, July 20, 2012