EUROCONTROL's Aircraft Performance Model (BADA) acclaimed as a world standard

13 June 2017

The BADA team is a tiny one, with just five people, and the annual BADA conference began life 15 years ago as a small user group meeting. Today, people come from all over the world to the annual BADA Conference, unique in its dedication to aircraft trajectory prediction and simulation.

“There was a great diversity of backgrounds and expertise at the Conference; I believe everybody took advantage of the opportunity to interact and share ideas,” observed Andy Jennings, Systems Engineer at NATS.

BADA was hailed as a trusted product and one that is a cornerstone in aircraft trajectory calculations. There was general consensus that further developing BADA is a critical enabler for the simulations and ATC operational systems of the future.

The Base of Aircraft Data is an Aircraft Performance Model which we develop and maintain. It contains models of almost all aircraft in operations today; it is used for aircraft trajectory prediction and simulation in ATM R&D and in operational ATC systems.

Conference outcomes

The participants actively contributed to a variety of thematic workshops and interactive sessions, and:

  • learned more about BADA’s theoretical model so that they could make faster, better use of it;
  • benefited from an information exchange with other BADA users from many domains, so allowing them to ensure consistency in aircraft performance modelling in a variety of applications;
  • were informed about the legal framework for BADA’s development and the new registration process for obtaining BADA licences;
  • had presentations on various themes, allowing for exchanges on BADA model theory, recent developments, applications for ATM R&D, ATC operational applications and environmental assessments. One special addition this year was a session devoted to the use of BADA in airborne applications to support pilot decision-making tools for optimum trajectories.

Looking to the future

BADA is a system that is remarkably cost-effective: a very small team runs it and it is free of charge for its thousands of users. As development is centralised, there is no wasteful duplication for the ATM community at large.

EUROCONTROL is constantly being asked not only to continue maintaining BADA, but to further improve and expand it: we have undertaken to do our utmost to make this happen.

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