For a safe, secure sky

By bappaditya paul

Come 1 September, Kolkata will for the first time hold a national conference on air safety and navigation to deliberate on the latest technological advancement and practices in aviation to make flying safer.The existing Air Traffic Control (ATC) at NSCBI Airport

Over 250 delegates who carry out Communication Navigation Surveillance (CNS) functions at different airports across India will attend the daylong event being organised by the CNS Officers’ Guild of Airports Authority of India.

Representatives of a few original equipment manufacturers (OEM) of CNS apparatus, such as Northrop Grumman, are expected to participate in the event to be held at the Science City Auditorium off E M Bypass.

CNS Officers’ Guild is a professional body that represents CNS engineers and executives posted at the airports across India. CNS Officers play a major role in the safety of the air traffic service by providing round-the-clock communication, navigation, surveillance and air traffic management (CNS-ATM) system as per the latest standards of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR) of the DGCA to make the Indian airspace safe.Helicopter in the skyThe highpoint of the conference is its three technical sessions that will cover air safety, security, communications, future air navigation services, apparatus maintenance and manpower management. Besides experts from its own trade, the Guild has roped in three experts from Jadavpur University, the Indian Institute of Management-Calcutta and the Indian Statistical Institute to deliberate on the subjects.

“The primary aim of the conference is to improve the level of flight/aircraft guidance on our skies in pursuance the latest ICAO standards; this will contribute to making flying safer,” said Mr Pinaki Banerjee, eastern regional secretary of the CNS Officers’ Guild. “During the conference we will share amongst ourselves the best practices in CNS and Air Traffic Management; areas will be identified that require further improvement.”

The Guild has earlier held three international event on aviation: a seminar on Emerging Trends in Communication, Navigation and Surveillance in Civil Aviation in 2007, on Next Generation Air Traffic Engineering System in 2010 and in 2012 it hosted the 42nd International Federation of Air Traffic Safety Electronics Associations (IFATSEA) all in Delhi.

“This is for the first time that such an important national event is being held outside the national Capital,” Mr Banerjee said. One of the reasons for choosing Kolkata as the venue is the recent automation of the Kolkata Flight Information Region in which CNS engineers and officers played a crucial role.

(The author is on the staff of The Statesman, India. This report first appeared in The Statesman on 26 August 2014.)


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