Voando na Europa - EUROCONTROL, seus regulamentos e slots
Once flying in European airspace, pilots may feel some differences in air traffic control compared to other parts of the world. There, everything is controlled by the European Organization for the Safety of Air Navigation = known as EUROCONTROL.
This international organization works with national authorities, air navigation service providers, civilian and military users, airports and other organizations. Its activities involve strategic and tactical flow management, regional airspace control, etc.
Just as the EURO is providing a single currency for Europe, EUROCONTROL is an attempt to provide a "Single European Sky" and try to make it simple for air operators. At present, there are 41 member states, and it would be a mess if there were no regulation of pan-European authority. One of the common tools that Eurocontrol uses every day is airspace regulations and slots. All IFR flight plans are monitored by a CFMU (Central Flow Management Unit). Each airport and air traffic sector has a maximum published capacity. When capacity is exceeded, measures are taken to reduce traffic. This is called regulation. The goal is to use the capacity effectively, keeping the average delay as low as possible. In order not to exceed capacity, EUROCONTROL delays the aircraft to the ground.
These delays are commonly known as "ATC slots". These slots are allocated (if necessary) two hours before takeoff time. Once the slots are allocated, the flight receives the CTOT (Calculated Take Off Time = estimated time of original "chocks-out" EOBT + taxi time + delay caused by regulation). The aircraft then has to leave the CTOT with tolerance -5 to +10 minutes. This can be a bit frustrating, especially for riders who do not visit Europe regularly. Your passengers may be aboard on time, but the aircraft can not leave due to the ATC slot and have to wait on the ground for the CTOT.
Os despachantes do OCC podem monitorar facilmente todos no Portal de Operações de Rede EUROCONTROL (NOP) e ver todos os regulamentos atuais, cenários recomendados e slots alocados. A equipe da OCC pode dar-lhe informações sobre o CTOT real (o atraso pode mudar várias vezes) e sobre a causa da regulamentação (capacidade do aeroporto, condições climáticas adversas - tempestades, neblinas, greves de controladores, etc.).
Os despachantes da ABS Jets sempre tentarão trabalhar com o seu CTOT . Para "congelar" (no caso de você saber que seus passageiros estão atrasados e que o atraso atribuído é mesmo bom para eles) ou melhorar o seu CTOT caso você precise voar o mais rápido possível. Melhorias podem ser feitas através do Helpdesk do Eurocontrol ou re-planejar seu FPL - mudanças de nível de vôo ou evitar alguma parte do espaço aéreo às vezes podem ajudar muito.