The Network Manager reports on its achievements in 2013
The Network Manager’s goal is to continually improve the air traffic management network’s performance through effective operational partnerships. By taking a network-centric stance, it coordinates and consolidates all activities, making sure that the focus is on the wider general interest.
In 2013, the Network Manager did a great deal to help resolve bottlenecks and promote fluidity in the pan-European network. In the annual report for 2013, you can read about our activities and achievements in that year.
2013: targets met
2013 was another busy year for the NM, marked by a number of significant achievements.
NM focused on the actions needed to achieve the performance targets of the first Reference Period (RP1) of the SES Performance Scheme.
- enhancing network operations management;
- improving flight efficiency improvements;
- synchronising major ATM changes;
- mitigating the impact of strikes on the network’s overall performance;
- expanding the flexibility of capacity management in some ACCs, constrained because of social tension or rigidity in opening control sectors;
- supporting safety improvements;
- integrating airports into the network.
The main performance indicator is the en-route ATFM delay measured in minutes per flight; the network performance target for 2013 was 0.6 min/ flight. This target was exceeded: at the end of 2013, en-route ATFM delay was 0.53 min/flight. This is the best delay rate since measurement began.
This result was particularly commendable in a year that was marked by a significant amount of industrial action, which caused 13.6% of total delays. Had there been no industrial action, there would have been just 0.46 min/flight of en-route delay.
Our contribution to delay savings
In addition to the targets defined for the network, the Network Manager Performance Plan (NMPP) includes a range of other indicators so that stakeholders may appreciate how much NM contributes to the ATM network’s performance. The main target for NM is to reduce en-route ATFM delays by 10% below the figures set out in the plans for 2012-2014.
NM’s contribution to delay savings in 2013 were calculated on accepted Re-routing Proposals (RRPs) and the Network Manager Operations Centre’s direct action.
NM’s overall en-route delay reduction in 2013 was almost 800,000 minutes; this is equivalent to 0.08 min/flight. Without this contribution, the delay in 2013 would have been 0.61min/flight. This equates to 13.7% of the annual network delay. Around 132,000 minutes of this reduction was achieved via direct re-routings.
The NMPP defined two targets, measuring the route extension from an optimum defined by the great circle distance. One target relates to route design; the other is based on the last filed flight plan. Both key performance indicators have to achieve a reduction of 0.75 percentage points from 2009 to the end of RP1.
The design indicator result in 2013 was 2.8%; this met the target for that year and is on the right path for achieving the RP1 target. The flight plan indicator value in 2013 was 4.57%, missing the target by 0.17 percentage points.
The lowest level ever for flight efficiency was reached in December 2013 with 4.43%. The target was missed mainly due to capacity shortfalls caused by ATC strikes or reduced capacity in some centres.
To close the gap, the NM launched a Flight Efficiency (FE) Initiative which describes the strategic and operational actions it will take in tackling the SES performance targets. The FE Initiative gives both a qualitative and quantitative assessment of the impact of these actions on the performance of the European ATM network.
A number of flight efficiency projects begun in May 2013, like the Network Impact Assessment and Invalid IFPS Queue Treatment, delivered savings of some 180,000 nautical miles in 2013.