FAA Launches Hiring Push For 4,300 Air Traffic Controllers By 2026

The Federal Aviation Administration’s application window to become an air traffic controller opened yesterday and will run until…

FAA Launches Hiring Push For 4,300 Air Traffic Controllers By 2026

The Federal Aviation Administration’s application window to become an air traffic controller opened yesterday and will run until August 2nd. With this opening, the FAA highlighted that it is looking to take on over 4,300 controllers over the next five years.

The FAA plans to keep filling up control towers and other air traffic facilities over the next half a decade. Photo: Getty Images

A sizeable workforce

The FAA’s controller workforce reached 14,242 employees last year, with 920 new controllers joining. Amid the responsibility to ensure the safe, orderly, and efficient movement of air traffic through US airspace, each of these individuals would undoubtedly have gone through robust vetting and training to fill their boots.

Generally, there are three types of controllers. These are split by approach and departure, tower, and en route.

New Air Traffic Control Specialists (ATCS) will spend their first weeks of employment in a training program at the FAA Academy in Oklahoma City. There, they will be on a temporary appointment while they receive basic training. Those that succeed in the initial training program and meet other requirements will go on to receive a permanent position at an FAA facility.

Notably, a basic salary for this starting position will be $41,101 plus applicable locality pay “based on facility assignment.” Pay will also increase progressively during different training phases at the controller’s facility.

Air traffic control
Certified controllers can take home up to six figures a year while receiving generous federal benefits. Photo: Getty Images

Encouraging applications

Ahead of the application window, the FAA launched a campaign to encourage women, minorities, and those from underrepresented communities to apply. As part of the campaign, the agency engaged with diverse groups and launched a digital toolkit to help get the word out.

FAA Administrator Steve Dickson shared the following about the importance of the initiative in a statement:

“Having individuals with diverse backgrounds helps us find ways to continue enhancing aviation safety and efficiency. I hope more people will pursue the opportunity to become an air traffic controller as a result of this effort.”

Meanwhile, Teri L. Bristol, the chief operating officer of the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization, stated the following about the job role:

“Being an air traffic controller is not only important, but it’s also an interesting and dynamic career. Air travelers and the public rely on these safety professionals to oversee thousands of aircraft that travel in our national airspace system every day.”

Stay informed:  for our daily and weekly aviation news digests.

New York JFK Tower Getty
The FAA is keen to diversify its applicants. Photo: Getty Images

Industry transitions

Altogether, the US aviation industry is bouncing back strongly following over a year of downturn amid the pandemic. With passenger activity on the right path, the country will need to ensure it has enough controllers to meet demand this decade. Overall pre-pandemic levels aren’t expected to return until at least 2023. However, after this, a rise in activity is expected. With a mandatory retirement age of 56, there is always the need for new controllers.

What are your thoughts about the FAA’s target to hire 4,300 air traffic controllers by 2026? What do you make of these goals? Let us know what you think of the initiatives in the comment section.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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How Avelo Airlines Is Boosting Flight Efficiency With Data Analytics

Avelo Airlines got operations off to a flying start at the end of April. Following success at its…

How Avelo Airlines Is Boosting Flight Efficiency With Data Analytics

Avelo Airlines got operations off to a flying start at the end of April. Following success at its Burbank, California base, it is set to open up another one in New Haven, Connecticut, during the third quarter of this year. With this momentum, the carrier is keen to get the most out of its data to fully optimize its services.

Avelo Airlines is keen to make the most out of its Boeing 737 trips while keeping safety at the forefront of its operations. Photo: Avelo Airlines

A proactive partnership

This week, Avelo announced that it has taken on GE Digital’s Electronic Flight Operation Quality Assurance (eFOQA) flight data monitoring (FDM) and processing solution. This application helps carriers fully utilize flight data to enhance their overall operations. Amid this announcement, Simple Flying caught up with Michael J. Quiello, vice president of safety, security, and operational excellence at Avelo Airlines and Andrew Coleman, General Manager of GE Digital’s Aviation Software business, to talk about the benefits to be had with the system.

Notably, with the solution, Avelo can leverage flight data to attain the highest safety and efficiency standards in the market. This process will allow it to take part in top-of-the-range safety programs alongside the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Avelo’s Quiello explains that the eFOQA system allows his airline to conduct more safety studies because it’s not having to do the usual tedious tasks such as manipulating the data. The system aligns all the data for Avelo to give it output. Thus, instead of being pulled back by the day-to-day trivial work, Quiello’s team can focus on safety studies and analytics.

GE’s solution includes a massive library of over 10,000 pre-built algorithms that give airlines bondless analytics customization and data processing abilities. Photo: Getty Images

Keeping on top of things

This approach could prove to be incredibly valuable for the airline. As an ultra-low-cost carrier, it needs to ensure that operations continue to remain cost-effective and that passengers can continue to pay low fares. Moreover, services also need to be run safely. Therefore, combining several insights from the data at hand can ensure that Avelo has the right balance.

“When the airline first started out in late April, we had an idea of how the airline is going to operate. So the first thing you want to do is say, ‘Is the airline operating like we’ve designed it to be?’ And that’s when you start using the data to say that ‘It’s operating pretty close to what we thought it would operate, but how can we make it better?’” Quiello told Simple Flying.

“Now you start using that data to try to improve the processes, just a little bit, and you can use data for just about anything, to understand your turn times, to understand your flight operations. So, all that data coming together really helps to make this a highly efficient system. When you’re very efficient, you lower your cost, and when you lower your costs you can pass it on to your customers.”

Ultimately, airline passengers can reap the benefits to be had with making the most out of data analytics. Photo: Getty Images

Benefiting the industry

By deploying eFOQA Mainline, airlines can analyze specific flights to identify hazards and evaluate mitigation efforts with user-friendly tools. After the data flight is processed, Tableau, a data analytics platform, can display the information in interactive, web-based presentations.

Airlines have access to GE Digital Aviation Software’s Event Measurement System (EMS) for safety analysts with eFOQA Mainline. Photo: Getty Images

Importantly, this seamless approach can do wonders for airlines and even the wider industry to understand broader issues. Raw data doesn’t take external factors into account. The time of day, weather conditions, and location are not considered. However, after flight data is inputted in the system, it can understand trends better and help stakeholders look at any potential issues, whether they are individual, local, regional, or global.

“The FAA requires an operator to pull 88 attributes for a FOQA program. Attributes include how a plane took off, how it landed, and how much fuel was in the plane,” GE’s Coleman shared.

“In contrast, the newer planes to go into service, such as the Airbus A220, capture 24,000 attributes. There is an immense amount of data coming off of each and every flight from these aircraft.”

With all these data points, there are plenty of opportunities to optimize operations. For instance, airlines can better plan maintenance amid all of the information gathered over each flight. Notably, 25% of the maintenance budget from an airline comes from unplanned maintenance. Therefore, GE Digital is working with operators to utilize this data more effectively.

Tel Aviv Air
Airlines all across the globe rely on GE Digital’s data solutions. Photo: Getty Images

Stay informed:  for our daily and weekly aviation news digests.

Smoothing out the process

Overall, Coleman explains that there was a time when individuals not only needed a particular degree, but they needed to be able to program to make use of certain data. However, today, there are pilots and mechanics who don’t want the intervention of IT departments and are able to gather insight from the data in a simple, easy-to-use manner.

Just this week, Avelo shared that it is launching four new routes from Burbank this fall. It will head to Fort Collins-Loveland, Colorado, Monterey, California, and Provo and St. George, Utah, throughout September and October. The company also announced another route from the Greater Bay Area to Las Vegas earlier this month.

With the airline quickly expanding so soon after its commencement of operations, it will need all the insights it can get to serve efficiently through its development. Data analytics will play a major role in the next chapter of global aviation as the industry strives to recover from the overwhelming impact of the health crisis.

What are your thoughts about GE Digital’s solution and how it can help airlines with their operations? What do you make of the prospects of Avelo Airlines and the benefits it could have with GE’s system? Let us know what you think in the comment section.

Source : Simple Flying More   

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