Collaboration boosts essential safety services


Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) won the CANSO Global Safety Achievement Award 2020 for its partnership with Aireon on the Aireon ALERT service, providing vital support to search and rescue personnel.

Aireon ALERT is a global emergency aircraft location service. ANSPs, commercial aircraft operators/airlines, regulators and search and rescue organisations rely on Aireon ALERT to provide the most recently known position of ADS-B OUT 1090MHz equipped aircraft.

By partnering with Aireon to operate this service, the IAA can ensure search and rescue personnel have the most accurate aircraft position data available when responding to an incident, regardless of global location.

Osman Saafan, CANSO Safety Standing Committee Chair and DFS Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH Director Corporate Safety & Security Management and Civil-Military Affairs said: “Safety is aviation’s number one priority and it is important that despite these difficult times, we recognise those in the community who are exploring innovative solutions and optimising technology to keep our skies and airspace users safe. I offer my congratulations to IAA, and in particular, General Manager, Enroute, North Atlantic Communications and Aeronautical Information Services, Sean Patrick, for winning the CANSO Global Safety Achievement Award 2020. Sean and the team have achieved a truly pioneering feat in aviation safety, turning all-new Aireon data into critical information for search and rescue services that is literally saving lives.”

Simon Hocquard, Director General, CANSO, said: “The CANSO Global Safety Achievement Award is an excellent example of how CANSO works to address key issues at a global level and share knowledge and best practice around the world. It also brings our industry together and demonstrates the power of partnership. This year the award recognises not only the ingenuity of IAA but also the importance of its partnership with Aireon. It’s great to see how cross-industry collaborations like this are championing new technology and enhancing the vital role ATM plays in supporting critical services and connectivity. This is essential as we continue to shape our safe and sustainable skies.”

Peter Kearney, Chief Executive, IAA, said: “Safety is the priority in everything we do. The IAA has always been at the forefront of air navigation service innovation, and we invest in technology and skills to improve the safety and efficiency of aviation. Aireon ALERT provides a unique safety service to the global aviation industry. This award is a timely boost to the IAA, in recognition of the essential air navigation services that we continue to provide despite the current health crisis. Despite the difficulties caused by COVID-19, the IAA and air navigation service providers throughout the world must continue to prioritise investment in global leading innovation and technology and this must be supported by all governments.”