Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen)

The Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) is the FAA’s multibillion-dollar program to modernize the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS). Recognized as one of the most ambitious infrastructure projects in U.S. history, NextGen aims to increase the safety, efficiency, capacity, predictability, and resiliency of American aviation.

Rather than slightly upgrading an aging infrastructure, the FAA and its partners have implemented major new technologies and capabilities, which are leading to a new way of managing air traffic known as Trajectory Based Operations (TBO).

Our modernization initiative enables a more flexible—yet robust and resilient—aerospace infrastructure expected to meet projected demand and support the administration’s goals. With an eye to the future, NextGen efforts are ensuring the safe introduction of non-traditional users into aviation, such as with commercial space transportation and advanced air mobility.

NextGen comprises complex integrated and interlinked programs, portfolios, systems, policies, and procedures. NextGen has modernized air traffic infrastructure in communications, navigation, surveillance, automation, and information management. Within its scope are airport infrastructure improvements, new air traffic technologies and procedures, and safety and security enhancements.

NextGen improvements also help to reduce harmful emissions. Along with improving aviation operational efficiency, the FAA supports programs to facilitate sustainable aviation fuel uptake, and new aircraft and engines. We engage with the public and share noteworthy practices with the aviation community to accelerate the adoption of innovative technologies.

Through research and collaboration, NextGen is defining new standards and further advancing our global leadership in aviation. The FAA fosters international cooperation in evolving enhanced aviation technologies that improve airspace system safety and mobility.

Explore the past, present, and future of NextGen.


The United States is home to the world’s busiest and most complex airspace system. Spurred by forecasts for future air traffic demand, the FAA started NextGen with a singular focus on NAS modernization to make flying safer, more efficient, and more predictable.

NextGen Today

NextGen capabilities are active and expanding at locations across the nation.

Future NAS

The FAA is looking to further improve NAS operations through TBO and introducing a vision for an information-centered system built for diverse operations.

Performance Reporting and Benefits

NextGen improvements have realized benefits that we have measured by year and type. Benefits will accumulate over time as NextGen pursues its integral contribution to the U.S. airspace, economy, and flying public.


Additional Documents

Last updated: Friday, May 12, 2023