I welcome you to the 13th annual Integrated Communication, Navigation and Surveillance (ICNS) Conference.
This year’s conference will provide you with a better understanding of domestic and international Communication / Navigation / Surveillance / Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) programs, implementation strategies, standards development, research, and ICNS technologies. These capabilities enable the significant improvements in safety and airspace efficiency envisaged by programs such as NextGen in the United States and the Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) initiative.
Our theme this year is “Diverse Aircraft in a Common Sky: ICNS Leads the Way.” Since the beginning of powered flight over a century ago, we’ve seen a continued infusion of new aircraft capabilities, technologies and operational intents that have driven continuous evolution of our airspace systems to permit the continued safe and efficient operations for all participating traffic. Several examples of major disruptive technologies that come to mind include introduction of turbojet engines, the move from terrestrial to satellite based systems and more recently the move toward Trajectory Based Operations.
We will take a focused look at the emergence of a new family of diverse aircraft that present many new challenges to airspace planners. Some call them “Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS),” and others “Remotely Piloted Aircraft” (RPA), yet others “Unmanned Aerial Vehicles” (UAV), and of course in the popular press one can’t miss the term “drones.” Whatever one calls them, these new aircraft offer a great variety of new operational capabilities and come in a wide range of sizes, configurations and performance capabilities.
Our general format is consistent with past years, and will be familiar to returning participants. Each day begins with a plenary session which will contain a mix of keynote speakers and moderator-lead panels. The morning plenary sessions are complemented by several parallel technical sessions in the afternoons on specific ICNS topics.
Of particular note, we have two distinguished Keynote Speakers this year:
- Pam Whitley, Assistant Administrator for NextGen (A), FAA
- Jim Williams, Program Executive, UAS Integration Office, FAA
In the evenings we have a series of receptions and events provided by our exhibitors. Mike Harrison has again returned to ICNS and has prepared a delightful and thought-provoking presentation for Tuesday evening titled “Droning on About UAVs.” Wednesday evening we will again be hosted to our annual entertainment event by our exhibitors, where visiting their booths during the breaks might well pay off for you!
I am glad you chose to join us this year at ICNS, and I invite you to take advantage of numerous opportunities to network with your colleagues during our morning breakfasts, breaks, lunches, and evening social events. Learn from the program; renew old acquaintances; make new connections.
John R. Moore
General Conference Chair, 2013 ICNS