What it does
ITP is an advanced ADS-B In application that allows ITP-equipped aircraft to fly more often at optimal or less turbulent flight levels during oceanic flights.
- Improved fuel economy
- Reduced emissions
- Avoiding turbulent altitudes
Instead of burning excess fuel at inefficient altitudes for thousands of miles, aircraft equipped with ITP save fuel and reduce emissions. Aircraft equipped with ITP can also more easily leave a turbulent altitude, reducing risk to cabin crews and giving passengers the smoothest ride possible. During operational trials, ADS-B-In/ITP-equipped aircraft saved an average of 573 pounds of fuel per flight. Enhanced situational awareness with cockpit displays saved additional fuel even when no ITP maneuvers were performed.
ITP is available now to equipped aircraft on trans-Pacific flights, with Oakland Air Route Traffic Control Center authorizing pilots' ITP maneuvers.
Anchorage, and New York centers will begin allowing equipped aircraft to request ITP maneuvers by the end of 2016.
How it works
Maintaining optimal cruise altitudes on oceanic crossings requires many altitude changes to compensate for fuel burn, save fuel with better wind conditions, and improve ride quality at less turbulent altitudes.
ITP uses precise ADS-B location data to allow for altitude changes that would otherwise be blocked by non-radar separation procedures.
Flight crews flying ITP-equipped aircraft have cockpit displays and special algorithms that calculate "ITP distance" for the flight crew to determine if a safe climb or descent can be performed. Instead of being "trapped" by the proximity of other aircraft, ITP-equipped and trained flight crews can request ITP maneuvers to their preferred flight level. Air traffic control, which has the total traffic picture, can authorize the requests. Because of ADS-B precision, less separation is required for ITP maneuvers so they can happen more often.