Era wins Namibian civil aviation deal

US-based Era Systems Corporation has been selected to supply a national wide area multilateration (WAM) system to Namibia.
The system, which will be delivered to the Namibian civil aviation authority (CAA), will cover more than 825 000 square kilometres and will be a significant component of an overall air traffic management (ATM) system upgrade to be managed by Thales ATM, the prime on the contract.

Era’s MSSsm ADS-B and multilateration system will provide complete nationwide coverage for Namibia as it prepares for a significant increase in air traffic, associated with the 2010 FIFA World Cup taking place in neighbouring South Africa, the company says in a media release.

The Era solution consists of a network of strategically placed ground stations that will provide higher accuracy, greater update rates, better coverage and improved reliability when compared to traditional radar, with much lower initial and maintenance costs.
Data from the Era surveillance will be fused with primary and secondary radar data and integrated into a new EUROCAT-X ATM system.
“We are proud to have been selected by Thales ATM as its multilateration and ADS-B technology provider for this large and strategically important project in Namibia,” said Russell Hulstrom, vice president of Era’s Air Traffic Management business.
“Era’s unmatched track record in deploying operational wide area multilateration systems was an important selection consideration for the Namibian CAA and we are committed to success on this historic project.”
Thales last month announced it had been awarded a contract by the Namibian Ministry of Works, Transport and Communication to supply the latest version of its EUROCAT control centre as ell as a co-mounted primary and Mode S secondary radar for the Hosea Kutako International Airport.
No contract value was given.
“The contract, which is already in force, will modernise Namibia`s current Navigation Surveillance and Air Traffic Management (ATM) capabilities, ensuring a significant improvement of safety and efficiency in Namibian airspace,” Thales said.
EUROCAT is a modular system that controls traffic in continental en route, terminal approach, transcontinental and oceanic airspace. The WAM system is used to compute aircraft position by the triangulation of signals transmitted by aircraft transponders. The co-mounted primary radar and Mode S secondary radar will help the Namibian Civil Authority improve the quality and integrity of aircraft detection, identification and altitude reporting.
“These improvements translate into benefits in terms of safety, capacity and efficiency – benefits which are key to supporting the future of the high-traffic density airspaces such as Africa”, stated Daniel Kleim, Managing Director of Thales`s Air Traffic Management Systems business line.
Namibia is one of many African countries that have selected Thales technology to secure their airspace. Thales ATM technology is already in place in Algeria, Angola, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Sudan and the seventeen ASECNA1 (the Agency for the Security of Air Navigation in Africa and Madagascar) states.
Thales is a recognised leader in ATM systems and civil radars and has a 70% market share in the navigation aids market. There are more than 260 EUROCAT centres, totalling some 4,000 controller positions in service throughout the world.