INTERVIEW

Air Navigation for export

Russian companies are seriously competing with the global players in the air navigation services market.
AUGUST, 30 / 2019 / 5 MIN
Фото вышки в Örnsköldsvik
After the breakup of the USSR, domestic airspace technologies experienced difficult times. In all areas, lagging behind advanced countries was observed. At the beginning of the 2000s, a definite turning point was outlined in this trend. Russian companies specializing in radio-electronic equipment managed to adapt to the new air navigation world order and even managed to impose some of their rules on it.
According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, in 2019, the export of Russian aeronautical equipment increased by 35%. Today, the key importers of Russian technologies are India, Belarus, Egypt, China, Syria, the United Arab Emirates, Cuba, Kazakhstan, etc.

The Sky review portal is launching a media project of a series of interviews with senior managers of companies successfully selling their products abroad. In an exclusive interview, AZIMUT JSC CEO Asker Saidov told about the experience of his company working under the Rostec State Corporation.

Asker Saidov – Azimuth JSC CEO.
Mr Saidov, AZIMUT has got a lot of technologies that are in demand with the consumers of air navigation services. One of them is the GALAXY ATC Automation System installed and successfully operating not only at the airports of the Russian Federation, but also at the airports of such countries as Armenia, Egypt, Germany, South Korea, etc. that can be considered the most effective. Please share the secret, what is needed to create a world-class product?
«The success of any company depends primarily on organizing a team of highly qualified specialists. To make each of our products, we thoroughly create a team of developers from professionals of different generations. To develop the "GALAXY" ATC Automation System project, we invited both experienced professionals, who pioneered the creation of ATC automation systems in the Soviet Union, and young specialists with the knowledge of modern computing technologies and experience in the field of ATC.

The idea of using a three-dimensional Earth (WGS-84) model to calculate accurate aircraft location, according to the surveillance facilities, had leapt into the minds of the developers involved in the development of the "GALAXY" project a long time ago. These efforts were taken because the use of plane projections in trajectory data processing and in the calculation of planned trajectories did not enable obtaining the required accuracy, according to modern requirements. In the end, the "GALAXY", which was certified in Russia in 2013 and meets the ICAO requirements for Aviation System Block Upgrade, managed to solve this problem even more effectively. The system is based on four-dimensional flight trajectories and is a modern scalable solution for low-, medium-, and high-intensity airspace.»
Please tell us what the technical basis of the "GALAXY" ATC Automation System is.
« Mathematics, mathematics and once again mathematics... The accuracy of the aircraft location calculation is one of the most important qualities of air traffic control systems. This provides ATC units with the ability to predict and track flight parameters, rescuers with the exact coordinates of the search, economists with the ability to most densely load the airspace with flights and monetize the result. All market participants should stand to gain, and most importantly — citizens who calmly get on a plane and safely reach their destination points.

The "GALAXY" is a high-level automation system, which implies generating various alerts to the ATC controller in the event of a real-time emergency situation. The system constantly monitors relative aircraft location in order to prevent hazardous proximities, reducing below the minimum safe altitude, violation of aircraft airspace zones; alerts the controller in case an aircraft deviates from the intended route, a pilot fails to comply with the traffic service instructions, etc. As a result, the system decreases air traffic controller load and increases the safety level.
»
How was the market niche being won?
The first GALAXY system was installed in the city of Kazan in 2013 to increase the airspace capacity during the summer Universiade. In the same year, another system was put into operation in Yerevan. For our company, the project in Armenia has been very important. First, we won the tender, which was attended by such world leaders in the field of air navigation equipment as Thales and Indra. Secondly, Armenia is a member of the EUROCONTROL Agency, and for the "GALAXY" ATC Automation System it was a test of strength and compliance with the European Agency standards.
Of course, the implemented projects in Germany and South Korea can be considered a great success. We are also currently shipping equipment to Sri Lanka to support operations in the Indian ocean sectors.
»
What makes the company competitive at the world level?
«People, unique technologies and quality. No air navigation service provider will under any circumstances allow the installation of an ATC system of dubious quality. Our system is already well known, because the professional community of air traffic controllers is a limited number of people instantly spreading information equally on the advantages and disadvantages of any system. In addition, one of the main advantages of the "GALAXY" ATC Automation System is its modular and scalable architecture that allows producing both very large systems and individual working positions. This flexibility demonstrates its effectiveness as in different parts of the world the airspace and airports have different capacities.»
What difficulties do Russian companies face entering the world market of air navigation services?
First of all, one should understand that this is not a momentary history. It may take years from the beginning, when a product is just presented in the market, until it is supplied for the first time. Besides, it is necessary to be able to offer new solutions to the industry, the solutions not possessed by others.

At the same time, we should not forget that the main goal of our work is to ensure flight safety, and to achieve this goal, all the resources of the company must be committed to it.
»
Покрытие вторичными локаторами
"GALAXY" ATC Automation System Simulator.
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