Air Traffic Management (ATM) Procedures

Operating procedures are required for ATM for the introduction of new concepts or technologies as well as improved procedures for existing technologies.

Scope of activities

  • Supporting tasks of the Network Manager in accordance with the Network Manager Implementing Rule requirements
  • ATM Procedures support to enable operational deployment
  • Development and validation of harmonised ATM procedures
  • Standardisation of ATM procedures in support of European Commission Single European Sky Initiatives

Stakeholders involvement

  • ATM Procedures Development Sub-Group (APDSG)

Ongoing Activities/Workplan


Dynamic ATM Processes

European Route Network Improvement Plan

Support the development of the common general principles for airspace design, airspace management and their technical specifications.

Airspace Management Processes (in coordination with the Airspace Management Sub-Group of the NET-OPS - ASMSG)

Review and develop the necessary ATS procedures to facilitate advanced management of airspace utilisation. Review and develop the necessary ATS procedures to ensure an effective coordination between the parties concerned for an efficient tactical use of the segregated airspace. Scrutinise ASM Processes and Procedures and assess the need for supporting ATS procedures.

Air Traffic Flow and Capacity Management

Review of the selected ATFCM processes and procedures to assess the need for supporting ATS procedures. Draft material identifying requirements for procedures to support multi-(downstream) unit coordination of and accommodation of ATFCM measures (Required Time of Arrival - RTAs). Review current implementation of procedures and agreements used for enroute absorption of time and identify the need for new ATS procedures. Exchange of meteorological and ATFCM information with impact on operations in upstream/downstream units.

Cross Border

Cross Border Operations

This area covers aspects related to processes of notification, coordination and transfer of control. A common, harmonised approach at pan-European scale on the issues surrounding the coordination and transfer of control provides the potential for a seamless integration of operations in adjacent ATS units, adjacent States, or adjacent FABs.

Coordination and Transfer of Control

The closer integration of the ATFCM processes with ATS operations leads to the need to review and potentially enhance the existing provisions governing the notification, coordination and transfer of control between ATS units.

The Guidance for Coordination and Transfer of Control will be subject to regular updates to reflect the latest developments in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of coordination and transfer of control.

Common Format LoA

Continuous monitoring of potential elements to be covered in the agreements between the ATS units is required. Developments under WP A are expected to require proper representation in the formalised between two ATS units, including the recommended guidance for accommodating them within LoA. Guidelines for establishing Letters of Agreement between ATS units are regularly reviewed and updated.


General ATS Processes and Procedures

This area covers a number of items that are extremely relevant for safety and efficiency of operations but also have an indirect (significant nevertheless) effect on the network.

Review and development of ATM procedures submitted by Stakeholders

The APDSG is a unique co-ordination forum for European harmonised ATM procedures which allows identification, review and proposals for improving the existing provisions and procedures. Expertise of the Sub-Group (APDSG) will also be used to address issues raised from local operating environments with the aim to provide guidance or to review and amend existing provisions with the aim of harmonisation of operations.

Flight Planning

Flight planning provisions to accommodate EUR Regional requirements, PBN applications Future flight planning provisions (Flight and Flow Information for a Collaborative Environment FF-ICE)

Wake Turbulence related ATS procedures

Recategorisation of the wake turbulence categories requires the review and amendment of the PANS-ATM provisions defining the conditions and the application of the wake turbulence in providing separation to aircraft.

Wake turbulence separation for displaced threshold operations. Review of the wake turbulence phenomenon and reaching a better understanding of formation and the decay of the wake vortices led to possibility to protect more efficiently for wake turbulence. Some of the conservative values adopted decades ago can be reduced.

RT Phraseology for notification of the wake turbulence category. Current operations requires in several instances that controller or pilot use in RT the wake turbulence category of an aircraft. Future developments in RECAT towards dynamic application of wake turbulence separation, will require an RT ambiguity free environment.

Operational Use of Downlink Airborne Parameters

  • Operational Use of Selected Level, Downlink Airborne Parameters
  • Resolution Advisories (RA) downlink

Other ATS Procedures or guidance documentation

  • Departure Procedures
  • Altimetry Setting Procedures
  • Radio Communication Failure

ATM Procedures Support to Regulatory Activities

Provide input to developments of Standardised European Rules of the Air (SERA)


Mr. Neculai Cojocariu
Air Traffic Management Procedures Development
APDSG Chairman