The air traffic control of the Netherlands - LVNL - is responsible for managing the civil airspace and everything that this involves. This includes modernizing and managing technological systems, providing aeronautical information and air traffic control training, and providing aeronautical maps and publications. LVNL is also a core member of the Dutch Drone Delta initiative, where they are working on the development of the unmanned aviation industry.
LVNL is currently examining their role in the unmanned aviation industry, particularly for U-space. With the European U-space legislation, the concept of dynamic reconfiguration has been introduced to avoid proximity between manned and unmanned aircraft within U-space. It applies to U-space airspace designated within controlled airspace, where Air Traffic Control (ATC) - LVNL for civil controlled airspace (e.g., Schiphol) in the Netherlands - is responsible.
The role of ATC within U-space airspace established in controlled airspace will be important for the safe interaction between manned and unmanned aviation
Toby Enzerink, AirHub
Dynamic airspace reconfiguration is defined in European regulation 2021/665 and further laid out in the Acceptable Means of Compliance and Guidance Material of EASA. In general, the process aims to respond to short-term changes in portions of the U-space airspace to accommodate traditional manned aviation flying in U-space. Since U-space will initially be maximized at 500 ft, users such as HEMS, police, and inspection helicopters will be affected.
The process is an interaction between manned and unmanned aviation, the ATC unit, the U-space Service Provider (USSP), and the Common Information Service (CIS) provider. It begins with a trigger from a manned aircraft to enter U-space. Based on this trigger (the trigger for ATC to provide the aircraft with clearance), the ATC unit starts its dynamic reconfiguration procedure.
This procedure includes alerting the USSP and UAS operator and publishing the restriction of the airspace. If the restricted area is clear of UAS flights, the USSP will notify the ATC unit. With this information, the ATC unit is able to clear manned traffic to enter the airspace while ensuring separation between manned and unmanned aviation. For this concept, it is important to inform all (local) stakeholders involved during the U-space implementation process. Please check out our U-space page to learn more about the implementation of U-space.
Because of this collaboration, it'll be clear what role LVNL will be playing in unmanned aviation. As manned and unmanned aviation will cross each other, it's important LVNL is ready.