Finland and Estonia set to merge air traffic control services

The countries hope to improve environmental impacts and safety measures by monitoring aircraft at two centralised facilities

Both Finland and Estonia have revealed plans to merge air traffic control systems beginning as early as next year.

As the two countries share the same airspace, establishing a system to collaboratively use should help reduce costs and improve flight safety.

The new model is set to have a centralised network that can be accessed in both regions, with bases at both Vantaa and Estonian Air Navigation Services in Tallinn.

“It [could be] used as if it were one team. A Finn can control an Estonian airspace sector and vice versa. That would be sensible action,” said Raine Luojus, CEO of Fintraffic. “There may even be a situation where Finnish air traffic control provides service to the entire Estonian airspace for an hour or two, then it takes a break and Estonian air traffic control provides service to Finland.”

Working with a unified ATC system will enable airlines to create more efficient routes, which benefits them and the environment, the company claims. Additionally, safety is set to improve with the new infrastructure, as both centres can monitor weather data which could improve flights.

Fintraffic and the country’s national carrier, Finnair merged in February of this year. This enabled the airline to optimise fuel consumption by establishing more efficient routes, which was aided by data given by the air navigation services provider.