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About Us

AirNav Ireland provides air traffic management services including: Air Traffic Control Flight information Alerting and search and rescue services Aeronautical information North Atlantic Communications

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Air Traffic Management

AirNav Ireland provides air traffic management services in the 451,000 km2 of airspace controlled by Ireland. This airspace forms a crucial gateway for air traffic between Europe and North America.

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Flight Planning

Welcome to the AirNav Ireland Flight Planning area. This section contains allow pilots to file, change, delay or cancel flight plans.

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Aviation delivers strong economic and social benefits, but it can also have detrimental impacts on the environment. We have a critical part to play in driving down emissions and delivering a sustainable future for the industry.

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Types of Air Traffic Control

Tower Control 

Tower control, also known as aerodrome control, is in many ways the most visible part of air traffic control. AirNav Ireland is responsible for providing tower control at the three State airports, Dublin, Shannon and Cork. From the tower, the controller is responsible for all aircraft operating within the airport control zone and on the ground at the airports. 

Before departure, aircraft must file a flight plan which details important information such as the destination, route and preferred altitude. When ready for departure, the pilot will contact the control tower. Start up and taxi clearance will be issued by the surface movement's controller while it's the responsibility of the air movement's controller to issue take off clearance. Once airborne, the aircraft contacts the appropriate area radar controller.

Approach Radar Control 

The approach radar controller is responsible for arriving aircraft within approximately 30 - 40 miles of the aerodrome. They sequence traffic for arrival and line them up with the runway. The standard separation is 5 nautical miles, however, under certain conditions, 3 nautical miles separation is permitted. This reduction in separation under certain circumstances is in keeping with international standards at busy airports to increase the efficiency and capacity of these airports. This reduction in separation is permitted in the airspace in the vicinity of Dublin Airport. The controller uses techniques such as speed control and changes in altitude and direction (radar vectoring to ensure separation) and the correct sequencing of arriving aircraft). Innovative procedures such as Point Merge are also used to good effect.

Area Radar Control 

As in approach radar control, here too controllers work on radar, but on a bigger range. Airspace is like a giant jigsaw - as a puzzle consists of many individual pieces, the airspace is divided into different sectors which are assigned to individual radar positions. As an individual area becomes busier, more radar positions are opened to reduce the workload on individual controllers. Each sector also has a sector capacity to ensure that individual controllers do not become overloaded. Area radar controllers in Dublin handle traffic up to 24,000 feet while in Shannon they operate up to 66,000 feet.