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RNLAF employs Eurocontrol MUAC's air traffic control system

13 December 2012

The Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) has started using Eurocontrol's Maastricht Upper Area Control Centre (MUAC) air traffic control system at the Nieuw Milligen Air Operations Control Station (AOCS) in Apeldoorn, Netherlands.

The milestone is part of a cooperation agreement signed in March 2012 between the company and Netherlands Ministry of Defence.

The milestone is part of a cooperation agreement signed in March 2012 between the company and Netherlands Ministry of Defence.

As per the agreement, the provision of MUAC air traffic data services will help RNLAF maintain a military air traffic control capability at Nieuw Milligen and seven other air bases across the country.

The company is scheduled to make MUAC's relevant correlated radar and flight plan data available to RNLAF bases by establishing a virtual centre within MUAC, which can be remotely operated by the air force's en-route, approach and tower controllers.

The resulting shared traffic picture fosters close understanding between military and civil controllers, enabling RNLAF to plan and ensure safe military flights in the Netherlands National Air Space.

As part of the initial operational capability, one RNLAF radar approach control sector along with two arrival sectors from Woensdrecht and Gilze Rijen have been moved to the MUAC system.

A second radar approach control sector is scheduled to be connected to the MUAC system on 14 December, followed by a third in March 2013, while full operational capability is expected to be reached in October 2013.

Once operational, the system will replace the plan handling and radar operating system (PHAROS) and the centralised approach air traffic control system (AUTOTRAC) at Nieuw Milligen AOCS.

Eurocontrol will also deliver necessary documentation and train RNLAF's operational and technical staff to operate the system, as part of the shared ATS system project aimed to promote further harmonisation in air traffic management.