NEW DELHI: In a move that would enhance safety and efficiency of air operations, pilots from now on will receive take-off instruction on their screens right inside the aircraft's cockpit.
Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh, along with Secretary, Civil Aviation Nasim Zaidi and AAI Chairman, V P Agrawal, had recently launched the trial operations at the Mumbai airport.
In addition to Mumbai, the Data Link Departure clearance (DLC) systems were being deployed at Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad International Airports.
"The new system would eliminate possibility of human error and enhance safety and efficiency of operations," a statement from the Civil Aviation Ministry said.
Pre-departure clearance is an authorisation issued by Air Traffic Control (ATC) to the pilot regarding the runway to be used, route to be flown from departure to destination and the cruising height that the aircraft is expected to maintain.
At present, an air traffic controller on request from the pilot issues pre-departure clearance through voice communication using VHF radio from ATC tower. The pilots are expected to read back the entire clearance to confirm correct receipt of the same, again through voice communication.
Such procedures, sometimes led to potential misunderstanding between the pilot and the controller.
Apart from this, the procedure also led to loss of valuable time for the pilot waiting for his turn to get the clearance as it is not possible for more than one pilot to talk to the controller at a time.
The Data Link Communication technology would eventually replace the present system of voice communication. Under this new system, a pilot's request for pre-departure clearance from the ATC using Flight Management Computer in the cockpit.
The controller gets the information about the aircraft requesting the clearance on his work-station and he selects the appropriate clearance from the data base and sends the requisite information to the cockpit via Data Link.
Thus, getting the information both on screen and print via Data Link confirms issue and receipt of correct clearance, saves time for the pilot and eliminates human errors thereby enhancing safety and operational efficiency, the statement said.