26th July, 2011
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, yesterday, unveiled a roadmap for satellite navigation in the countryâ€™s airspace, saying that it is the right path to take.
Satellite navigation, known as performance-based navigation, PBN, represents a shift from terrestrial or sensor-based navigation currently used in Nigeria.
Unveiling the PBN road map in Lagos State, Southwest Nigeria, the Director-General of NCAA, Dr. Harold Demuren, said that the development is a deliberate plan by the Federal Government to boost air safety and reduce cost for the struggling airlines in Nigeria.
Satellite-based navigation, he said, boosts efficiency in aircraft trajectory and increases airspace capacity. It also enables reduction in aircraft fuel consumption, improves air safety and eliminates flight delays and cancellations, Demuren added.
He said that NCAA had partnered local and foreign aviation agencies to attain the feat, adding that the development would have a positive impact on airfares now sky high.
â€œThe NCAA and the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency teams have worked together with the Boeing Company and the International Air Transport Association to achieve this great feat for the Nigeria PBN implementation.
â€œToday marks a great milestone for the Nigerian aviation industry, and of course, the NCAA, as we make this giant move to transit from terrestrial navigation to satellite with all its invaluable benefits,â€ Demuren said yesterday.
According to him, the movement from terrestrial navigation to satellite-based system is in accordance with the stipulations of the International Civil Aviation Organisation, ICAO.
The PBN, Demuren said, will be implemented in three phases. The near term will be implemented until 2012 while the medium term will come into force between 2013 and 2016 and the long term will be implemented between 2017 and 2025.
The move by the NCAA to move the airspace forward came as the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, was reluctant to implement the project for many years.
â€” Simon Ateba