World ATM Congress 2019 opened this morning at IFEMA, Feria de Madrid. With expected attendance of over 8,000 people from around the globe, including 253 exhibitors and 200+ speakers, the world's largest air traffic management (ATM) event will tackle key industry issues. These include expanding airspace capacity, managing drone traffic, and recruiting and retaining a diverse mix of people with the right skills for future ATM needs. The event showcases the latest products, services, and thought-leadership in ATM.
World ATM Congress is a Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO) partnership with the Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA), running from 12-14 March. The event brings together global leaders and industry innovators to discuss key opportunities and challenges in the industry; explore the latest products, solutions, and research; and develop strategic and commercial partnerships. The event features a two-day Conference, world-class Exhibition Hall, and targeted education sessions.
Today, Pedro Saura García, Secretary of State for Infrastructure, Transport and Housing and ENAIRe President, opened the Conference of World ATM Congress. He highlighted that in the 75th anniversary year of the Chicago Convention, the aviation community had developed significantly but that there are important challenges on the horizon. These range from maintaining a safe, secure air transport system and ensuring capacity, operational efficiency, and quality services to embracing innovation, sustainability, gender equality, and adequate staffing. He remarked that ATM plays an important role in the aviation value chain and that strong partnerships and integration are key.
Henrik Hololei, Director-General for Mobility and Transport at the European Commission, went on to explore the global picture of ATM and key challenges and opportunities for Europe. Sara De La Rosa, seconded by UNICEF to Interagency Supply Chain Group (ISG), then talked about the vital use of remotely piloted vehicles in development and humanitarian aid.
Tomorrow’s special guest speaker is Shaesta Waiz, the youngest woman to circumnavigate the globe solo in a single-engine aircraft, followed by a discussion on attracting and retaining women and millennials in ATM. A panel of key industry figures and stakeholders discussing improving airspace capacity will close the two-day Conference Programme.
Over 200 experts from around the globe will share their expertise on a wide range of aviation issues in the 251 presentation sessions and special events across six education theatres and the bustling Exhibition Hall. These include safely integrating and regulating new entrants in the airspace, like unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and commercial space vehicles; space-based surveillance; artificial intelligence and machine learning; cybersecurity; and how new technologies, including automation, affect the role and training of air traffic controllers.
World ATM Congress brings different stakeholders together to explore all users’ airspace requirements. The Conference and education sessions will consider the range of services drone operators require, including new digital infrastructure and rules and concepts of operations that will ensure safe, harmonised, and seamless operations for all users of airspace at any altitude.
“This is the ATM event of the year, where we meet dozens and dozens of customers from around the globe and contribute to the industry dialogue on pressing topics such as UTM, cybersecurity, traffic flow management, and diversity and inclusion in the workforce,” said Thales Vice President of Digital Aviation (ATM) Todd Donovan, a member of the Voice of UTM panel.
“These are challenging times in ATM, given continuing growth in air traffic, the implementation of new technologies, onset of various new airspace users, and requirements for more varied services and skillsets in ATM,” said Raimund Fridich, Deputy Chairman FABEC Communication. “World ATM Congress offers organisations like ours a unique platform to discuss big issues and find ways to work together to address them, whether that’s the tools we use or the partnerships we foster.”