Further collaboration announced by Sweden’s air transport industry to improve punctuality and lower emissions
Mon 22 Nov 2010 – From January 2015 it will be possible to predict to the minute the landing times of an aircraft at Stockholm-Arlanda Airport, when it will arrive and leave the gate and when it will take off again. Better punctuality will also lead to reduced fuel consumption and lower emissions, say the airport’s operator Swedavia, Sweden’s air navigation services provider LFV and SAS Scandinavian Airlines. The three parties will be linking various projects to accelerate the development of ‘green approaches’ at the airport. Meanwhile, Stockholm-Arlanda has jointly received the annual ALN Ecological Award for its work to reduce carbon emissions produced by taxi travel to and from the airport. In conjunction with EuroPark, a new dispatch system has been introduced that gives ‘ecotaxis’ priority on a “lowest emissions, first in queue” basis.
Under the Swedavia, LFV and SAS collaborative agreement, a common goal has been established to increase flight predictability down to +/- 2 minutes at 30 minutes before actual landing, in-block, off-block and take-off times by 1 January 2015, said Lars Andersen Resare, Director Environment and CSR at SAS.
The three parties already have a strong history of collaboration over the past 10 years, including the introduction of ‘green approaches’ from 33,000 feet in May 2008. Earlier this year, SAS was granted formal permission by the Swedish Transport Agency to use ‘curved approaches’ with Boeing 737NG aircraft at Stockholm-Arlanda’s third runway.
The S-shaped curved Required Navigation Performance Authorization Required (RNP AR) approach uses satellite-based GPS instead of the traditional instrument landing system (ILS) and makes it possible to reduce noise exposure in sensitive areas around the airport as well as shorten distances and save fuel and emissions.
“Sweden was the first to develop a number of innovations within air navigation services that have contributed to lower emissions,” said Thomas Allard, Director General of LFV. “Now we are taking these things a step further and creating the conditions for even more advanced green approaches.”
Lars Andersen Resare said this could involve implementing RNP ARs from the top of descent. He added there were a number of ongoing projects by the individual parties aimed, for example, at creating more efficient logistical flows. Although the projects were coordinated, there was no common objective, he explained. “Now we have decided we should prioritize projects that support our common goal and focus on implementation.”
He said the increased collaboration followed calls at the Aviation & Environment Summit held in Geneva in September from organizations representing ANSPs, airports and airlines for greater cooperation between the sectors on establishing airspace efficiency improvements.
SAS Acting President and CEO John S. Dueholm said: “Increasing efficiency, while at the same time reducing emissions, is vital for the entire aviation industry. Being at the forefront of this development and inspiring others to do the same is something of which all partners in this collaboration are very proud.”
Meanwhile, Stockholm-Arlanda claims the new taxi dispatch system at the airport is the only one of its kind in the world and automatically gives taxis with the smallest environmental impact the shortest waiting time. Since it went into service in March, shorter waiting times have meant that the overall share of ecotaxis has increased from 47% to 84%.
Together, the airport and EuroPark claim to have reduced CO2 emissions by 9,386 tonnes since March.
“We have worked systematically to reduce emissions from all aspects of the airport for a number of years,” said Thomas Cassel, Head of Commercial & Terminal Business at Stockholm-Arlanda Airport. “Today, ground transport to and from the airport accounts for the bulk of the airport’s total emissions, so it is a priority issue for us to reduce these, which is something the new dispatch system certainly does.”