Thales Alenia Space has announced a major breakthrough in the study of the “SBAS for Africa and Indian Ocean” satellite-based augmentation programme from the Agency for Air Navigation Safety in Africa and Madagascar (ASECNA).
The validation of the system’s architecture and geographic coverage marks a major milestone in the development of this system designed by Thales Alena Space within the scope of the preliminary design study (phase B) contract signed in February 2019 with ASECNA. The ASECNA programme is based on the European EGNOS programme.
In line with the ASECNA’s strategic plan, this programme aims to enhance navigation and surveillance operations for all phases of flight, thus providing a significant and sustainable improvement in-flight safety and efficiency over the African continent.
Planned from 2022, these services will be used to augment the positioning accuracy provided by current satellite navigation constellations, including GPS and Galileo.
The new system will improve accuracy to within a metre, while also boosting the integrity, availability and continuity of safety-related applications. In addition to aviation, it will benefit land, sea and rail transport in the post-COVID-19 changing environment, as supporting user safety, cost-effectiveness and sustainable development.
In addition to defining the system’s architecture to support these SBAS services, the study will provide ASECNA and its member states a clear view of the development, deployment and operation of the “SBAS for Africa and the Indian Ocean” programme.
This study is being carried out jointly by ASECNA and Thales Alenia Space, with funding from the European Union, as part of an ambitious programme to develop Africa’s aviation sector.
Set for completion by the end of the year, it also includes provision for a pre-operational service, along with field demonstrations of how to use the service in conjunction with partner airlines.
Thales Alenia Space has now completed acceptance testing of the demonstrator, which will subsequently be deployed at various sites.