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Inauguration of the PIARCO AFISNET node

Inauguration Inauguration of the PIARCO AFISNET node

After the implantation of a VSAT at Cayenne Rochambeau in last November, ASECNA has deployed a new AFISNET telecommunication node at Trinidad & Tobago, an insular State of the Caribbean located in the West Indies Sea, off the coast of Venezuela. This air link will enable to modernize the communication mediums between Dakar FIR and PIARCO for (ATS/DS and AIDC) operational services hence facilitating data exchange between adjacent centres that handle traffic taking place in the EUR/SAM air corridor that connects Europe to Latin America.

The inauguration of the VSAT installation took place on March 16 at Port of Spain, the capital city of Trinidad & Tobago. During the ceremony the Director General submitted a paper about ASECNA before stressing the context of the AFISNET network whose studies had been commissioned by ICAO in 1986 to resorb communication and coordination problems among the FIRs in the gulf of Guinea. Mr. Amadou Ousmane GUITTEYE declared: “AFISNET considers itself as a Satellite-based navigation network totally devoted to air traffic services (ATS) in eight States in Central and West Africa, so as to improve the safety of air navigation in the region.

The network is henceforth managed by six (6) air navigation services providers: ASECNA, Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Nigeria Airspace Management Authority (NAMA) and Roberts FIR. As years passed by, the network was progressively extended and currently, AFISNET is an important infrastructure deployed over the entire African continent and even beyond, with almost 120 ground stations. It became important for the AFI region to ensure the handling of the continuous growth in traffic whilst maintaining the required safety level in that zone.

Following the Director General’s speech, the Minister in charge of the civil aviation of Trinidad & Tobago welcomed the installation of the VSAT relay. He observed that the establishment of the direct link between his country and Africa, through the Regional Control Centre of Dakar (CRNA), is more than a symbol of south/south cooperation. It is a kind of umbilical chord between his country, whose population in their majority are of African descent deported to Americas, and the mother continent that has been set up” concluded the Minister. The visit of new installations was crowned with the setting up of the direct phone communication between the Minister and Controller on duty at the Dakar CRNA.

After Cayenne Rochambeau and Piarco, ASECNA will continue enhancing the AFISNET network through a future installation of a VSAT at Recife in Brazil.


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