It has been projected that the application of Remotely Piloted Aircraft RPAS known as drones is expected to increase astronomically within the next five years with expected growth in the use of spaced aircraft also increasing the volume of air traffic in the next few years.
The Director of Operations, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, Mr Mathew Pwajok who disclosed this at a conference of the National Association of Air Traffic in Abuja recently, said in 2011 that the International Civil Aviation Organisation during a visit to the country recommended the sectorlisation of Lagos area control to reduce workload and enhance safety and the efficiency of flight operations
He added, that inadequate Air Traffic Control manpower, the implementation of the concept was not to be effected until last month.
Pwajok said an in-house training session for ATCs was organised while the simulation of the proposed sector operations was conducted at the NCAT, Zaria in preparation for the commencement of the operations.
According to him, sectorization workshops as well as stakeholders’ workshops were conducted for internal and external stakeholders.
To further enhance safety, Pwajok said six new Performance-Based Navigation Region Routes were established while new direct routes were also established to reduce flight times.
Other include, the establishment of Bi-directional routes to reduce conflicts within the airspace, Procurement of six new Doppler VORs, six new ILS to enhance en route and terminal navigation
According to Pwajok, benefits of the sectorization of the Lagos Area includes the enhancement of safety and efficiency of flight operations in reduces workload for ATC and pilots, reduces congestion on ATC voice frequency flight delays.
He named other positive gains as reducing flight time and fuel efficiency and cut in CO2 emission among others.
Pwajok concluded that sectorization remained the only option for the accommodation of the expected growth in traffic adding that the successful implementation of sectorization of Lagos area was premised on planning and effective collaboration between ATM and CNS