The Next Generation Air Traffic (NextGen) Control System seeks to enable optimized, direct routing of aircraft between airports; reduced aircraft spacing; continuous descent arrivals, precise arrival and departure routings and closely spaced approaches on parallel runways under a broader range of operating conditions. Lincoln Laboratory is supporting the Federal Aviation Administration in the development of the new surveillance technologies, as well as the development of  the decision support that will be leveraged the air traffic controllers, air lines, and pilots to achieve the Nextgen safety, capacity, and efficiency objectives.

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Runway Status Lights ›

Runway incursions present a persistent problem in airport ground operations. The FAA is pursuing a wide range of activities to improve runway safety. One of the leading safety technologies, called Runway Status Lights (RWSL), is being developed and tested by Lincoln Laboratory.

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Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) ›

TCAS has had extraordinary success in reducing the risk of mid-air collisions by alerting pilots directly in the cockpit that a collision with another aircraft is imminent. TCAS is now operating in all commercial airline aircraft to reduce the risk of midair collisions. Lincoln continues to investigate improvements to the TCAS threat logic.

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Unmanned Air Vehicle Airspace Access ›

The integration of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) into civil airspace requires new methods of ensuring collision avoidance. Concerns over command and control latency, vehicle performance, reliability of autonomous functions, and interoperability of sense-and-avoid systems with TCAS and Air Traffic Control must be resolved.

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Homeland Protection Support/ERSA ›

The Air Traffic Control mission area teams were very helpful in a Laboratory-wide effort to support Enhanced Regional Situation Awareness (ERSA). ERSA is an integrated sensing and decision support system developed for the complex and busy airspace surrounding the National Capital Region.

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Terminal Avian Hazard Detection ›

Bird strikes are an increasing concern for military and civil aviation as airport operations and bird populations continue to increase. The Terminal Avian Hazard Detection project seeks to address this growing problem by providing continuously updated information on locations and density of avian targets in the immediate vicinity of an airfield and to generate real-time warnings of bird activity for dissemination to pilots by air traffic controllers or direct data link.


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