Project results are expected to contribute to the following expected outcomes.
- Environment. Improved sectorisation will ensure more efficient flight routes and more optimal profiles and reduce delays at network level. At local level, requirements in respect of equipment and therefore power supply and cooling will be reduced.
- Capacity. Flexibility of sector-shifting to adapt to traffic demand and make best use of capacity at network level.
- Cost-efficiency. Potential reduction in infrastructure and the possible creation of competition between future data suppliers, which would reduce costs.
- Safety. Safety levels will be maintained, since virtualisation will have no impact on them.
To achieve the expected outcomes, all or some of the following should be addressed.
- Future data-sharing service delivery model. This refers to the development of digital platforms and services leveraging state-of-the-art technologies to enable future ATM data-sharing service delivery models (R&I need: future data-sharing service delivery model). It includes for example, the following features.
- A smart digital platform based on an EU-wide ATM data service layer will enable all ATM service providers to benefit from cross-border sharing of data. This would provide the data and specific applications (e.g. short-term conflict alerts, correlation) required for ATM services.
- Delivery of advanced cloud-based services for applications such as flight correlation, trajectory prediction, conflict detection and resolution, arrival management planning, the provision of safety-net services (e.g. short-term conflict alerts, minimum safe altitude warnings, area proximity warnings) and decision-making support tools as a service. This could be considered in the context of the wider application of the ‘free seating’ and authentication concepts to cross-border delegation of ATS.
- Infrastructure as a service: This refers to the development of digital platforms and services leveraging state-of-the-art technologies to enable a service-oriented approach to CNS infrastructure, with widespread implementation of IP-based technologies (R&I need: infrastructure as a service). This includes, for example:
- digital solutions enabling location-independent transmission of CNS data and/or voice communications with stronger reliance on satellite-based technologies, including integrated CNS applications using space-based sensors;
- digital solutions for dynamic allocation of IP connections reducing the need for VHF channels on the ground side and the need for the airborne side to switch frequencies several times during the flight.
- Free flow of data among trusted users across borders. This element will involve the development of digital platforms and services leveraging state-of-the-art technologies to enable the sharing of data through interoperable platforms and the exchange of open data between trusted partners, combined with open architecture policies (R&I need: free flow of data among trusted users across borders).
- Cyber-resilience. This refers to the development of digital platforms and services leveraging state-of-the-art technologies to enable the protection of information and information systems, manage cyber-resilience risks and implement appropriate safeguards to ensure the delivery of services. In this context, it is necessary to apply best practices and specific techniques already established in other domains such as banking (e.g. system design principles, cryptography, blockchain, software-defined networking) (R&I need: cyber-resilience). It will include, for example, the following features.
- Digital solutions for cyber-resilience. The aim is to prevent a cyberattack from being successful, to prevent operational disruptions caused by successful cyberattacks, to prepare for and adapt to changing conditions due to successful cyberattacks, and to respond to and recover rapidly from successful cyberattacks to ensure the continuity of operational services at an acceptable performance level.
- Digital solutions to increase system robustness against cyberattacks. The first and most impactful step towards strengthened cyber-resilience is to be able to keep operating in the event of a cyberattack by preventing cyberattacks from being successful. Elements that need to be addressed include increased foresight (prediction, anticipation, cyberintelligence), the introduction of patch management into safety-critical systems and the strengthening of controls related to intrusion prevention and detection. The research will cover both new technical cybercontrols in new and existing technical systems and improved human cyberskills in the operational context.
- Digital solutions for fast and effective cyberattack systems response. When under attack from outside or even inside, the response to the attack is of the greatest importance. Responsive measures include restriction of services and initiation of pre-defined and trained sequences. The focus should be on the secure delivery of services and data while being aware of the attack in progress. Security by design is key in this context and includes alternate paths for critical processes, graceful degradation of critical systems, and independent functional duplication for critical processes, with clear separation between system functions. In addition, it is essential to provide methods and means to allow the solution to recover as quickly as possible from degraded modes (minimum recovery time).
- Digital solutions for multistakeholder cybercontingency. Being resilient requires an anticipated and pre-defined acceptable drop in performance in response to an attack, in order to absorb the energy of the attack. Several levels of degraded mode need to be anticipated and integrated into contingency plans, to ensure a continuously controlled operation while healing measures and repair works can be undertaken. This degraded mode needs to be maintained until the effects of the attack have been assessed and accounted for. With the increased connectivity in aviation, contingency management is increasingly becoming a multistakeholder exercise that requires extended situational cyberawareness that goes beyond the borders of individual organisations. A better understanding of attack impact and potential attack propagation scenarios through multistakeholder system dependencies is needed.
13 October 2022
For further information: Funding & tenders