The FAA is pleased to report the successful implementation of 102 priorities as of September 2016, advancing work in four focus areas at target locations producing useful and measurable benefits to industry and the NAS. The FAA and industry agreed to a rolling plan to re-examine the needs of the NAS and its users and add milestones through 2019. The NextGen Priorities Joint Implementation Plan, 2017-2019 (PDF) was published in October 2016. This year’s plan provides additional focus to surface management through the deployment of the newly awarded Terminal Flight Data Manager (TFDM) contract, as well as additional focus on optimizing Performance Based Navigation (PBN) through time based flow management enhancements.
Given the success of this collaboration, the FAA and industry agree to keep collaborating through the NAC to update the commitments each year and roll the plan forward biannually. The consensus of the FAA and stakeholders represented on the NAC is that successful implementation of these commitments will help to shape the future of NextGen and contribute to its long-term viability.
The FAA and industry agreed on these high priority capabilities, with the FAA committing to specific site implementation plans and industry ensuring operator preparedness in order to take full advantage of NextGen benefits. Both the FAA and industry have identified specific commitments within each of the four focus areas to increase safety, reduce aviation’s impact on the environment, enhance controller productivity, and increase predictability, airspace capacity and efficiency. The FAA and industry will continue to monitor joint progress and be agile and flexible to make necessary adjustments to commitments.
The FAA and industry are committed to jointly evaluating the effects of these commitments on the NAS through the work of a Joint Analysis Team (JAT). This helps the FAA and industry understand the value of implementations in this plan. The FAA also has a monitoring and oversight process (PDF) detailing FAA’s continued engagement with the NAC. For additional information please see the Reference Guide.
Previous reports can be viewed at: NextGen Priorities Joint Implementation Plan, 2014-2017 (PDF) and NextGen Priorities October 2015 Joint Implementation Plan Update (PDF).
As of October 13, 2016
Completed: Departure Clearance Tower Services Initial Operating Capability achieved at ABQ, DCA, PDX, PHX, SEA, and STL in Q3-2016 and DAL and MCI in Q4 2016.
Completed: Wake Recategorization at LAX.
In addition to the changes above, timelines for all four focus areas have been revised to reflect the updated FAA and Industry commitments in the NextGen Priorities Joint Implementation Plan, 2017-2019 Report (PDF)
Multiple Runway Operations
To increase airport efficiency and reduce flight delays through the use of Multiple Runway Operations (MRO), the FAA and industry jointly commit to multiple projects nationwide. MRO capabilities improve access to runways and increase basic runway capacity and throughput by reducing aircraft separation standards. Improved access will enable more arrivals and/or departures during instrument meteorological conditions, which will increase efficiency and reduce flight delays.
Performance Based Navigation
With the new PBN NAS Navigation Strategy (PDF), the FAA will deliver new routes and procedures that primarily use satellite-based navigation and onboard aircraft equipment to navigate with greater precision and accuracy. The FAA will continue to improve air traffic flow in metropolitan areas and increase use of time based flow management decision support tools. The FAA commits to implementing multiple capabilities nationwide.
Surface Operations and Data Sharing
The FAA commits to implementing surface improvements through the development and deployment of Terminal Flight Data Manager (TFDM), by establishing a forum for meaningful engagement throughout the deployment, and by exchanging more data with additional stakeholders. The goal of these enhancements is to measurably increase predictability and provide actionable and measurable surface efficiency improvements.
Data Communications (Data Comm) will provide direct digital communications services between pilots and air traffic controllers and enhance air traffic control information to airline operations centers. The capabilities will enhance safety by reducing communication errors, increasing controller productivity, increasing airspace capacity and efficiency while reducing delays, fuel burn and carbon emissions at towers nationwide. Data Comm is critical to the success of NextGen, enabling efficiencies not possible with the current voice system.
Joint Analysis Team (JAT) Results
The NextGen Advisory Committee (NAC) has been instrumental in helping the Federal Aviation Administration move forward with NextGen implementations. In 2014, the NAC approved a recommendation for a set of integrated plans on four focus areas. These plans were developed by a joint FAA-Industry team, the NextGen Integration Working Group (NIWG) both operating under the NAC. The goal of the NIWG is to identify implementation priorities that deliver measurable benefits by certain dates, and, thereby, increase the community's confidence in NextGen.
Subsequently, the NAC formed the (JAT) which includes operational and analytical experts from the FAA and industry. The JAT was formed to reach a common statement of fact regarding performance impacts and benefits that can be attributed to implementation of NextGen capabilities. The JAT performed the evaluation of Wake Recategorization implementations at Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT), O'Hare International Airport (ORD), and Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW). To accomplish this goal, the JAT has analyzed data, metrics, methods and tools typically used by each of the parties in this type of assessment. Full details on methodology and findings can be found in the JAT Performance Assessment of Wake RECAT report (PDF).