Airways New Zealand wins two Computerworld Magazine awards for revolutionary air traffic control system

Thursday 31 July 2008, 12:37PM
By Airways New Zealand

Airways New Zealand has, for the third year running, received national recognition for the quality of its software development in the Computerworld Magazine Excellence in ICT Awards. The Airways-developed Collaborative Arrivals Manager won the Excellence in the Use of ICT for Customer Service and Best Sustainable ICT Project award categories.

Airways Collaborative Arrivals Manager (CAM) is a critical time management tool which enables Airways' airline customers to jointly agree on priority flights and re-schedule their services into the most cost effective configuration they choose, by matching demand to capacity at various New Zealand airports. It does this enabling airline operators to manipulate their fleet and network configurations in real time, so that any delays are incurred on the ground rather than in the air, minimising fuel burn, CO2 emissions and noise.

Airways New Zealand Service Improvement Manager, Greg Atkins, says that this is the first time in the world that all airlines operating within a country’s domestic airspace have been given complete, accurate and real-time visibility into the progress of their flights within in the air traffic management system, from the time each flight’s flight plan is entered into the air traffic control system through to landing, via a secure login over the internet.

“Since CAM went operational in September 2007, it has saved the airlines significant sums in operating costs and reduced fuel burn, as well as helping them manage passenger expectations, and reducing emissions,” says Mr Atkins.

“In addition, there are real benefits to New Zealand’s airlines that arise from their ability to prioritise their flights by re-allocating delay amongst their own fleet, and through managing and manipulating their own network delays to suit their commercial and operational priorities.”

Atkins says with CAM, Airways is contributing to an improved ‘on-time-performance’ for key flights and a subsequent improvement in their overall network integrity.

“With CAM we have measured savings of up to 12,000 minutes of aircraft flight time per annum for operations into Wellington airport, and even more significant results are being achieved at Auckland Airport when fog restricts operations.”

“The impact this is having on the environment is significant. Aircraft CO2 emissions savings from utilising CAM at Wellington Airport alone equates to approximately 1,368,000kg of CO2 saved,” says Mr Atkins.

Last year Airways New Zealand won the Overall Excellence in the Use of ICT category with its ‘Flight-Yield’ automated aviation billing and charging product, which has subsequently been sold to China. Once implemented, the Flight-Yield system will collect and process China’s aviation data from its five regional air traffic management bureaus, over 40 air traffic control centres, 150 domestic airports and some 300 airlines.