China will lead a transformation in global air-traffic management, according to a Boeing expert speaking at last week’s 2011 China Civil Aviation Development Forum in Beijing. Neil Planzer, Vice President of Air Traffic Management for Boeing Commercial Airplanes, said the relative infancy of the country’s aviation market meant that it was well placed to implement new technologies and processes.
“China is not burdened by the fragmentation of the European Union or by the dated infrastructure of the US,” Planzer told the Forum. “China has the opportunity to demonstrate strong leadership and create transformational system design, development and implementation through its five year planning cycle.”
Planzer shared the Boeing forecast that China’s commercial aviation sector will grow at an unprecedented rate. According to Boeing, Chinese airlines will need to purchase an additional 4,330 aircraft by 2029 to meet market demand. China’s air fleet has more than doubled in size since 2000, and Planzer pointed out that China can take advantage of its status as of one of the youngest air fleets in the world.
“Boeing has pioneered innovative air traffic management concepts such as required navigation performance and Tailored Arrivals. We look forward to expanding our cooperation with the CAAC and Air Traffic Management Bureau to help China advance its ATM system,” said Planzer.
“Programme investment decisions for the system should be based on the synergy of the whole, not on individual subsystem choices,” he said. “But even now, the system can start with tactical improvements that can be accomplished in the short term and still would be transitional toward a transformational system. Such new approaches would enhance safety as well as efficiency and capacity.”