Gaia Community

compassion, collaboration & cooperation iN transistion

The European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation, commonly known as Eurocontrol was first mooted in 1960 when The Eurocontrol Convention was signed and subsequently ratified in 1963Before the Convention entered into force that year, there were already indications that the matter of national sovereignty would complicate the full implementation of the organisation’s founding mission.

The first European plan for a harmonised air traffic control (ATC) system, proposed in 1962, was beset by the refusal of both France and Britain to comply, largely due to reasons closely linked with their national military airspace control. The other four original members (the Federal Republic of Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg) agreed in 1964 to set up a single international air traffic control centre to manage their upper airspace, 'centred' on the airport at Beek to the north of the Dutch city of Maastricht. 

[IT] was following my own Air Traffic Controller training and more specifically my Joint Civil/Military Area Radar training at RAF Sopley, that I was seconded by the then Ministry of Aviation [MOA] firstly to Eurocontrol Brussels and then subsequently to the Maastricht UAC in Beek, following its opening; where I was involved in the training of other ATCOs and the development of my original idea of utilising the 1.5GB digital data capability of the Philips Laserdisc System, with the Aeronautical Fixed Telecommunications Network [AFTN], to facilitate the expedition of radar-handovers between LATCC and the Maastricht UAC.

The Dictionary of Design and Decoration was presented to me at the end of my 
secondment and return to LATCC, as a direct result of my refusal to be bullied into submission by the head honcho of the Maastricht UAC, following the Trident/C130 air-miss over the LNO beacon, which happened as a result of evaluating new technology still under test, on live air traffic movements; a process which myself and others had vehemently warned against, over a period of several months before the incident.

The real irony of this whole potential disaster [BE]ing that, the self same head honcho and his tribe, were being filmed during a television interview, to promote the very success of the NEW DIGITAL Air Traffic Control System; when the Trident pilot came onto the frequency, for all and sundry to hear, screaming that he had just cleared cloud during his decent as he had narrowly avoided collision with the C130 !!!

Needless to say my own idea of utilising the 1.5GB digital data capability of the Philips Laserdisc system, with the Aeronautical Fixed Telecommunications Network [AFTN] • to facilitate the expedition of radar-handovers between LATCC and the Maastricht UAC • was never followed though by either Eurocontrol or the CAA in the UK, upon my return from secondment to LATCC, subsequent to my presentation of the same initiative to them. Thankfully my own DESIGN IDEA for an Interactive Multimedia System for Education was accepted by the National Physical Laboratory and the Council of Educational Technology, and subsequently incorporated into the UK Government's Educational I.T. Literacy Policy, regardless of the fact that money was not forthcoming and action was never taken to adequately train the teaching staff, into HOW BEST TO MAKE USE of THE TECHNOLOGY

Although Eurocontrol is not an agency of the European Union, the EU has delegated parts of its Single European Sky regulations to Eurocontrol, making it the central organisation for coordination and planning of air traffic control for all of Europe. Not withstanding however • in the context of Air Traffic Control for the Netherlands [LVNL], having become the world’s first air traffic control organisation to communicate its safety performance and potentially serious incidents in its operations and the Dutch Safety Board’s exemplary investigation  into the causes of the crash of Flight MH17 on 17 July 2014 in the eastern part of Ukraine • WHAT I FIND extremely disturbing is the fact that on the day of that flight at least 162 other commercial flights were happily being instructed by Air Traffic Control to take this very same route by member states of EUROCONTROL !!!???

The EU itself is a signatory of Eurocontrol and all EU member states are presently also members of Eurocontrol. The organisation works with national authorities, air navigation service providers,
civil and military airspace users, airports, and other organisations. Its activities involve all gate-to-gate air navigation service operations: strategic and tactical flow management, controller training, regional control of airspace, safety-proofed technologies and procedures, and collection of air navigation charges.

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Comment by Michael Grove on May 26, 2019 at 18:05

TRUTH is the daughter of TIME • NOT of AUTHORITY

                                     Francis Bacon b 1561 1626

Comment by Michael Grove on August 19, 2019 at 12:28

ALL of the above however, would not have been possible had it not

been for the fact that in early February 1935, while he was heading

the radio department of the National Physical Laboratory in

Teddington, England, Robert Alexander Watson-Watt wrote a

memorandum to the British government in which he explained how

radio waves could be used to detect aircraft. He quickly followed up

with an experimental demonstration. By July 1935 Watson-Watt was

able to locate aircraft consistently at a distance of about 140 km

(90 miles). His system grew into a series of radars that were then

called Chain Home, which typically operated at frequencies of

22–50 megahertz, which were much lower than radars developed

in other countries prior to World War II. Robert Watson-Watt

justified his choice of a non-optimal frequency for his radar with

his often-quoted “cult of the imperfect,” which he succinctly

stated as Give them the third best to go on with; the second

best comes too late and the best never comes.” In September

1938 the first of the Chain Home radars began 24-hour duty.

By the time World War II began a year later, there were 18 radars

defending the United Kingdom, and this number grew to 53 before

the war ended in 1945. Chain Home radars are given much credit

for the small Royal Air Force’s ability of turning back the German

Luftwaffe during the Battle of Britain in 1940. Watson-Watt

was subsequently knighted in 1942 for his work.

Comment by Michael Grove on August 8, 2021 at 13:52

Just another classic example of those supposedly [BE]ing [IN]control, actually having been tragically exposed for [BE]ing well and truly, nay TOTALLY
 • [OUT] of CONTROL.

"Our problems cannot be solved using the same level of thinking that created them." In order to take this next Momentous Leap in human evolution, "it's critical that we find the cartographers of consciousness, and the mapmakers of the terrain". And as Scandinavia is one of the regions centred on the tipping point to second tier, it's within our potential take on this challenge, "to provide for the rest of the world the kinds of models that the world needs."  Don Beck quoting Einstein

IT was the British who first established an Air Traffic Control system following the use of an elementary form of radar during WWII. I was one of the first Air Traffic Controllers, to be selected from Grammar School, who qualified in 1967 with a pilot's licence, ATC Aerodrome, Approach, Approach Radar, Area, Area Radar (joint civil/military) and meteorological certifications to my credit. The cost of all of this to the taxpayer, at the time, was enormous, but boy did it give me, as a 3 dimensional thinking, left-handed so-called dyslexic, an unprecedented opportunity to truly understand the ramifications of social and cultural, common-sense mindsets, on the consequences of consequences of complex systems. Unfortunately, because of the cost, ATCOs have no longer been trained as such, for a very long time - in no dis-similar manner than commercial pilots have been required to fund their own training.

So methinks [IS] there any wonder therefore that Don Beck once suggested that a global Spiral Dynamics Integral Solution should be based on the well and truly tested system of Global Air Traffic Control, which was established following the Grand Canyon Collision of 2 commercial airliners !!!???

[IT] IS of course NOW all a case of ...  

[BE]ing Drawn Down The Rabbit Hole

Comment by Michael Grove on February 2, 2023 at 10:49

... and here ME/WE are today in the UK faced with the fact that ...

"The RAF has been accused of discriminating against 160 white men in its effort to meet “aspirational diversity targets”. Tobias Ellwood, chairman of the defence select committee, told MPs that the RAF’s former head of recruitment had identified the cases before she resigned in protest.

After the revelation, Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston, head of the force, was asked if he had presided over a “lack of integrity at the top of the RAF”. [IT] comes as the Armed Forces struggle to retain female personnel amid a sex harassment crisis engulfing the military. On Wednesday, defence sources suggested to The Telegraph that Sir Mike, who authored the 2019 Wigston review into inappropriate behaviour of troops, should be considering his position." 

... as [IS] being reported by The Telegraph today.

plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose ... & I can well remember, during my time as the Institute of Professional Civil Servants [IPCS] representative at the West Drayton ATCC, the number of female staff both civil and military, who approached me with a plethora of these issues, some half-century since.   

Comment by Michael Grove on December 21, 2023 at 10:03
.. having been seconded to Eurocontrol Bruxelles and thence to the Maastricht UAC • I had already been approached to become the replacement Eurocontrol representative at the UN in Geneva • but following the H. von Villiez cover-up of the Trident/C130 air-miss over the LNO beacon • and been told to keep my mouth shut about why [IT] had happened, I resigned my secondment to Eurocontrol & returned with my family to the the UK to be revalidated & assume my position at LATCC.

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