PP-14 Highlights: Global flight tracking for civil aviation

Global flight tracking for civil aviation – a new resolution instructing WRC-15 to include this topic on its agenda

The loss of Malaysia’s Flight MH370 has spurred worldwide discussions on global flight tracking and the need for ITU and other relevant organizations to coordinate action within the scope of their respective mandates. On 30 October, the Plenipotentiary Conference which has been addressing this matter through its Committee 5 approved a new resolution titled “Global flight tracking for civil aviation”.

Determining the position of aircraft and reporting it to air traffic control centres is an important element of aviation safety. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has developed standards and recommended practices for systems that do this.

ICAO, at its special meeting on global flight tracking (Montreal, 12-13 May 2014), encouraged ITU to provide the necessary spectrum allocations for satellite to meet emerging aviation needs. The agenda of the forthcoming World Radiocommunication Conference in 2015 (WRC-15) does not directly address global flight tracking, but studies on global flight tracking are ongoing in the ITU Radiocommunication Sector (ITU-R).

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