A COORDINATED APPROACH TO THE SIMULATION, FLIGHT TEST AND OPERATIONAL EVALUATION OF AREA NAVIGATION ROUTES AND PROCEDURES

D. W. Richardson

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: The technology of area navigation (RNAV) has been available to our industry for almost thirty years. The manifestation of this technology in the form of airborne navigation systems capable of performing area navigation procedures in an operational environment has a history of well over twenty years. The obvious question of “Why, then, aren’t area navigation procedures an integral part of our National Airspace System?” has an almost equally obvious answer, “What procedures and what environment?“. Distant history notwithstanding, tremendous strides have been made in generating an answer to the latter question, sparked in great measure by the 1972 Area Navigation Symposium and the RNAV Task Force Report [Ref. 11. This current paper presents a status report on some of the accomplishments of the past three years in support of the efforts of the FAA in establishing a national system ef RNAV routes and ATC procedures. The ultimate objective of these efforts is to develop a data base suitable for the integration, in an evolutionary manner I as outlined in the RNAV Task Force Report, of the concept of RNAV into the National Airspace System (NAS) in a manner that will be of identifiable benefit to both the airspace users and the ATC system. To some degree this paper is a supplement to a previous paper presented at the June 1974 ION conference [Ref. 21. While that 1974 paper covered a variety of RNAV related subjects ranging from error analysis simulations to the establishment of avionics accuracy standards, this present paper will concentrate more on the operational aspects of area navigation, with particular emphasis on the evaluation of terminal area route design, ATC controller procedures, and pilot/RNAV system functions and performance criteria. While the programs discussed in this paper are, for the most part, being performed under FAA sponsorship, the results are still preliminary and the data collection and analysis is continuing. For this reason any results contained in this paper do not represent an official policy or position by the FAA, but are presented in the interest of exchanging technical information. Any opinions or philosophies observed herein are uniquely those of the author.
Published in: NAVIGATION, Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 23, Number 1
Pages: 18 - 28
Cite this article: Richardson, D. W., "A COORDINATED APPROACH TO THE SIMULATION, FLIGHT TEST AND OPERATIONAL EVALUATION OF AREA NAVIGATION ROUTES AND PROCEDURES", NAVIGATION, Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 23, No. 1, Spring 1976, pp. 18-28.
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