SITTI NATIONAL WIDE MILITARY ED137 NETWORK

The Italian Air Force (AM – Aeronautica Militare) has recently awarded SITTI the implementation of a geographical network connecting its main sites by use of the VoIP (Voice over IP) technology. The same network will be also used as the backbone for the Remote Instant Messaging service between operators located at different sites.

SITTI boasts a very solid and long-lasting strict relationship with AM that brought along the past decades at the installation of several VCS (Voice Communication Systems) in the airbases all over Italy. These systems are now going to be upgraded to be part of a large nation-wide standard network.

Dedicated so-called SCC/AM (Servizi Coordinamento e Controllo) centres are operating 24/7 to allow efficient and effective coordination between civil and military flights and to provide the air traffic control service in the military dedicated airspace. All these centres will now be connected to a nation-wide network, allowing direct connection on one side to the military control centres and on the other side to all military airfield towers.

The contract between the Air Force and SITTI envisages the installation or upgrade of MULTIFONO® M800IP® systems developed by SITTI, to allow VoIP communications in full adherence and compliance to the world renowned standard ED137. The new network architecture is not only allowing more efficient links between operators, but also dramatically reduces the amount of network resources needed: dedicated links are no longer needed as the bandwidth is only occupied while conversations are in place, thus giving the overall network a much greater throughput.

All what above is accomplished by server-based VCS systems of the M800IP® family, connected to the network via duplicated independent interfaces for reliability purposes and security reasons, thus fully isolating the local VCSs from the outer world, preventing possible unauthorized access.

The implementation of such an important and large-scope project once more testifies the capability of SITTI to tackle challenging scenarios.” – Mr. Massimo Romata, SITTI Program Manager, stated – “This also applies to those clients for which security is of utmost importance, as for military purposes.

EUROCAE WG122 – SITTI CONTRIBUTION

Always very attentive to the evolutions in the field of voice handling, SITTI is actively participating in the EUROCAE WG122 working group devoted to the definition of virtual centres and all their implications on the services needed for an efficient, safe, effective management of the air traffic.

On May 21, ENAV hosted a WG122 meeting at their nice facilities in Rome Ciampino, during which several important aspects on virtual centres have been discussed. Many experts from different companies representing both ANSPs (Air Navigation Service Providers) and industry met to commence work on a new document “Virtual Centre – Guidelines for Implementation”.

SITTI was represented by its Innovation Manager, Roberto Weger, who described the framework of the contingency and delegation use cases related to the initial deployment of the virtual centre concept within ENAV.

SITTI at AIRSPACE WORLD 2024

AIRSPACE WORLD is the world’s largest international exhibition dedicated to Air Traffic Control and Air Traffic Management (ATC/ATM); it will take place in Geneva (Switzerland) from March 19 to 21. This unique venue is attracting industry market leaders and Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) from all around the globe. Product developers, experts and end users will be gathering for three days to share the latest products and achievements.

AIRSPACE WORLD (https://airspaceworld.com) is at its second edition, organized by CANSO (Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation), the organisation representing ANSPs from all over the world. SITTI has always been present at all these important events, being at the forefront in the development of technologically advanced solutions.

The participation in this event is the natural prosecution of the continued presence of SITTI at the major exhibitions on ATC/ATM since decades. This exhibition is in fact the right place where Air Traffic Control stakeholders meet and make things happen. SITTI has therefore the opportunity of showing its latest products and innovative approaches with highly integrated solutions. It is also the right occasion to meet the interest of many customers, both those that are new to us and those who have been knowing us since long.

Following its vocation and commitment to present its Innovative Products to the international audience, SITTI will be participating be presenting new ideas and product concepts, with special attention to integration of different technologies, with high capability and expertise in the management of data and voice.

Voice Communication Systems (VCS), ED137 recorders (VRS), VoIP gateways, integrated information solutions, consoles, tower solutions are the main products developed by SITTI to provide customers with a comprehensive solution to their needs.

Come and visit us at booth J45.

VCS REMOTE MANAGEMENT BY SITTI

The Italian Air Force (AM – Aeronautica Militare) is more and more progressing in the achievement of their target aiming at centralizing the management of the Voice Communication Systems (VCS) used for the control of the national airspace. This project wants to make it possible to have remote secure access to all facilities from a central location, thus reducing the time needed for acquiring the status of possible malfunctions and the relevant corrective actions.

SITTI is a very long-term supplier to the Air Force and very well knows the network connecting the defence sites and the information they can share with other air traffic control installations. SITTI is therefore in the optimal condition for answering the request coming from the Customer to develop an executive plan for the identification of the services and functions to be made available at each site and the way they can be made accessible.

The Air Force Command requested SITTI to study a possible remote management infrastructure and define the relevant implementation phases, from the definition of the areas of interest up to the identification of the hardware and software modules and components that are required to gradually introduce remote management capabilities with nationwide extension.

The overall plan is divided into 3 major step:

  • Remote Surveillance (T1): centralisation of the alarm and status messages related to the working condition of remote components, with the aim of identifying possible problems and coordinate corrective actions.
  • Remote Diagnostics (T2): capability of executing remote access and diagnosis, by means of dedicated applications, e.g. monitoring the status of all connections of any kind and the real use of operative frequencies.
  • Remote Control (T3): possibility of issuing execution commands to remote facilities and sending reconfiguration patterns to cope with new operational needs, thus dramatically reducing the intervention time, crucial aspect especially in the military field.

The executive plan developed by SITTI has been submitted to the Italian Air Force in all its aspects and got full approval, thus allowing its implementation. Meanwhile, the pilot project has been tested, validated and approved. The new remote management features allow AM to quickly react to all ordinary and extraordinary situations that may occur while controlling the Italian national airspace.

NEW BOARD FOR A.T.I.

Hosted by the Guglielmo Marconi airport in Bologna, on November 30, AIR TECH ITALY had its annual assembly. Air Tech Italy (A.T.I.) is the association representing Italian companies specialized in supplying products, technologies and services to airports. The assembly allowed all participating companies to express their opinions and appreciation for the work done in the past three years and give their hints for the future.

The association was founded three years ago during the Covid pandemics and suffered from the limitations thereof, but nonetheless it succeeded in proposing the members interesting and useful initiatives that allow them to expand their business, especially on the international market. Among these,

  • common participation in international exhibitions,
  • weekly newsletter with tenders all over the world,
  • proactive collaboration with important Italian institutions like ENAC, ICE, Air Force

The assembly also had the task of electing the new board. Mr Giulio De Carli and Mrs Alessia Forte have been confirmed as President and Vice-President, respectively. SITTI representative, Mr. Roberto Weger, former member of the board, has also been confirmed.

Together with the other members of the governing board, SITTI will continue giving its contribution to the successful development of the association, with the aim of permitting all companies to create strong synergies to jointly propose their products and services, thus making their offer stronger and more appealing, supporting the “Made in Italy” brand that expresses the excellence and top performance of the products proposed by ATI.

Here is the website of ATI: https://airtechitaly.com/

SITTI INTEGRATED SERVICES IN MULTIFUNCTIONAL POSITIONS

In line with its internal process of modernization and technological development and enhancement, the Italian Air Force (AM) promotes all efforts aimed at streamlining and facilitating the provision of Air Navigation and Air Traffic Control services that result in an improvement of the efficiency and safety of operations.

In particular, Voice Communication Switching systems (VCSs) are required for the management of communications between ground infrastructures and aircrafts. Availability and efficiency of these systems are essential conditions for the effective accomplishment of the tasks assigned to the Air Force. The airfield towers have already been modernized along the past years with MULTIFONO® M800IP® state-of-the-art VCS systems.

Taking into account the technological developments in the Air Traffic Control field, it has been recognized that it is necessary to complete this modernisation process through the acquisition of so-called “multifunctional” features. This means the introduction at each tower Controller Working Position (CWP) of a fully comprehensive mean allowing operators to access the various subsystems used for controlling the air traffic in a unified, simple, ergonomic, standardized way.

The multifunctional MTF800 positions provided by SITTI allow operators to acquire operational awareness at a glance, concentrating all related information sources (even from third party suppliers) in a reduced number of screens, through which the interaction between operator and each subsystem (voice, frequencies, weather, cameras, recorders, flight strips, etc.) is simplified and integrated.

The SITTI MTF800 multifunctional system can be at any time expanded to accomplish new tasks or to adhere to possible new regulations and needs, thus permitting the move of an operator from one position to another (in case of need or maintenance) without any data disruption.

The first sites where MTF800 has been installed are the airbases of Ghedi and Pratica di Mare, while Decimomannu is in progress; another 6 airports will also be equipped with MTF800, with possible extension to further three. The “turnkey” approach followed by SITTI and the extreme flexibility capability of MTF800 have been particularly appreciated by the Air Force, thus improving the response to their challenging operational needs.

MTF800 can be used in both military and civil towers, by putting together and integrating information sources of different kinds, for on-site use as well as for remote tower installations.

AIR FORCE REMOTE RADIO SITES BY SITTI

The air traffic control communication network can be, generally speaking, made of many remote sites hosting analogue and/or digital single or multi-channel radios for allowing controller to talk to pilots. Remote radio sites shall provide operators placed at different geographical locations the possibility of using their frequencies in a shared way, so that a radio shall not be deemed as “belonging” to a given VCS (Voice Communication System), but can be accessed and used by a plurality of VCSs.

When radios are natively compliant with the international ED-137 standard, this feature is already given by the radios themselves because this is a common behaviour well defined by the standard. When vice versa radios do not comply with ED-137 (e.g. analogue or digital radios), then a gateway is put between the radios themselves and the VoIP (Voice over IP) network to allow mutual coexistence and access capability.

For the Italian Air Force, the gateway function is provided by so-called RIU (Remote Interface Units) by SITTI that permit MULTIFONO® M800IP® VCS systems to send and receive audio and data to and from radios of any kind. This is particularly of interest for the integration of remote site radios into the NATINAMDS radio infrastructure that is used by the Air Force. RIU devices also contribute reducing the bandwidth needed to connect to remote radios and provide all management and information services needed for their efficient handling.

SITTI is being supplying additional interface systems and RIUs to enhance and complete the access to all radio sites, also providing automatic operational substitution of faulty equipment, multiple VCS access to radios, priority assignment, frequency management tools.

The long experience accumulated by SITTI all along the many decades of successful support to military forces worldwide makes it possible to offer a turn-key solution project and geographical test bed that will be evaluated by the Air Force for implementation starting in 2023.

SITTI AT THE AIR FORCE OPEN DAY

The Italian Air Force (AMI) was officially founded in 1923, exactly 100 years ago. This event has been celebrated in many places in Italy with exhibitions and shows, one of which took place in Milano on September 10 at the Linate Airport, not far from the operational office of SITTI.

Several thousands of enthusiastic and curious people of all ages crowded the airport to have the opportunity of having a close view of aircrafts and military vehicles. Many interactive activities have been prepared to allow visitors to have a touch-and-feel experience of the technical means used by the Air Force for accomplishing its tasks, including flight simulators, operational and technological components, logistics and much more.

Visitors have been welcomed by many pilots, technicians and specialists who passionately talked about their daily work for the defence of the country and the execution of important rescue activities and international missions.

SITTI boasts a decades-long strict collaboration with the Italian Air Force, providing all military airports and bases with its top-most systems for Air Traffic Control. As such, SITTI was also involved in the preparation of this wonderful and interesting event, to make it possible to visitors to see how our Air Force works when ensuring a safe sky to all of us.

SITTI contributed to the show by installing and activating some operative positions in a simulated environment that allowed controllers and pilots to exchange important flight information and to provide situational operative awareness, in a similar way as operational rooms and SCC/AM centres (Coordination and Control Service of the Air Force) do every day.

 

SITTI UPGRADE OF DECIMOMANNU AIRBASE

SITTI communication systems are already installed at the Decimomannu base of the Italian Air Force (Aeronautica Militare). They allow local controllers to carry out a vast number of tasks, from airspace control to air traffic management and weather forecasting and information distribution.

In order to cope with the increasing operations that controllers are asked to perform, and to allow a larger and more integrated management of the communication lines (both radio and telephone) at the airbase, the local systems require some additional features, including VoIP connections to standard ED137 radios and telephone lines, however not forgetting the capability of interfacing analogue and digital links currently terminating at the airbase.

Some new interface boards, capable of properly dealing all related communication protocols as a matter of simple software configuration, together with controller working positions (CWPs) are going to be installed and commissioned to become operative at the beginning of 2024.

The systems upgrade involved the airbase tower, the operative rooms, the weather forecast office, the approach features and other facilities like IFTS. One of the systems supplied to the Italian Air Force is in fact used in the local International Flight Training School (IFTS), aimed at giving advanced in-depth training courses to pilots of combat aircrafts from different countries. Trainings are based on simulation scenarios that allow trainee pilots to have a very realistic understanding and feeling of the operational situations they may have the need to tackle.

SITTI SIMULATOR SYSTEM AND CONSOLES TO ITALIAN AIR FORCE

SITTI is known all over the world as a primary market leader for the development and supply of highly reliable, efficient, flexible and integrated solutions for civil and military air traffic control and public services, wherever secure, trusted and controlled communications are required. This unrivalled position in the market is also accompanied by the capability of our company to also produce customised consoles for operators.

Leveraging on its large experience accumulated in decades of successful presence on the market, SITTI is offering its customers a number of solutions for helping them choosing the best solution for their operative consoles. Controllers sitting all day at their desks with a heavy and critical workload must be given the best working solution possible.

It is not just a matter of comfortable sitting places,” – Massimo Romata, Program Manager, says – “but all aspects related to work environment shall be taken into consideration, such as:

  • Ergonomy and comfort
  • Seating adjustment
  • Non-toxic fire-extinguishing materials and paints
  • Easy access to communication instrumentation
  • Free line-of-sight view over controlled areas
  • Handy placement of displays
  • Space optimization

The simulation system provided to the Italian Air Force at Pratica di Mare (near Rome) envisages 6 different operative scenarios, in which trainers, trainees and pilots can easily interact by means of the embedded native radio, telephone and intercom simulation capabilities of the MULTIFONO® M800IP® VCS system. Up to 14 frequencies are simulated, thus allowing the execution of complex training sessions with the contemporary selection and use of a variety of radio channels to best represent live operational scenarios and give trainees a feel-and-touch approach to the tasks they are being trained for.

All these aspects are covered by the GH series of consoles that are going to be supplied to the Italian Air Force (AM) for the Pratica di Mare airbase, close to Rome. 20 new consoles with all their respective additional materials (arms, loudspeakers, armchairs, etc.) will be installed within the end of this year. Military controllers at the airbase will therefore benefit from all aspects mentioned by Mr. Romata in his speech.