I am very pleased to welcome you to this inaugural issue of the Newsletter of the WMO Commission for Aeronautical Meteorology (CAeM). My heartfelt thanks to the dedication of the Expert Team on Communication, Coordination and Partnership (ET-CCP), especially its two co-chairs Ms Marina Petrova (Russian Federation) and Ms Gaborekwe Khambule (South Africa), in taking forward this new initiative of the Commission.
The ICAO Meteorology Divisional Meeting (MET DIV 2014) conducted conjointly with the fifteenth session of the WMO Commission for Aeronautical Meteorology (CAeM-15) adopted a rolling fifteen-year strategy to guide sector-wide air transport improvements, including MET, over the period 2013 to 2028 and beyond, and will be implemented through the Aviation System Block Upgrades (ASBU) methodology of ICAO’s Global Air Navigation Plan (GANP). We will see major upgrades of Aeronautical MET Services to better support the user needs for seamless global air traffic operations, encompassing all phases of flight. Regionalization of services, new business models, expansion of private sector, and changing data policies will be key elements of the upgrade, posing significant challenges to most WMO Members and many NMHSs.
While this Commission will continue to play a pivotal role in developing a consistent WMO position in the ongoing discussions with ICAO on the Roadmaps and Concept of Operations for future Aeronautical MET Services, bearing in mind the need to ensure an inclusive approach in the forthcoming regionalization and globalization of the service provision, it is imperative for all affected Members and NMHSs to appreciate the upcoming changes that may affect the sustainability of the NMHSs’ infrastructure. In this connection, a series of regional and sub-regional events intended to raise the awareness of Members of the GANP and its ASBU methodology implications, challenges and opportunities, priorities and risks for the NMHSs has been or will be organized by CAeM, the first of which was the WMO RA VI European Conference on Meteorology for Aviation (ECMA-2015), held 13-14 October 2015 in Vienna, Austria. Please stay tuned and check the CAeM webpage (https://www.wmo.int/aemp/) and this Newsletter for the latest developments and news on the upcoming events!
The 68th Session of the Executive Council (EC-68), held from 15 to 24 June 2016 in Geneva, appreciated that the activities under the Aeronautical Meteorology Programme (AeMP) have been aligned with the general directions given by Resolution 3 (Cg-17) and Resolution 66 (Cg-17). The designation of the aeronautical meteorology as a priority in the WMO Strategic Plan (2016-2019), puts the focus on: (a) accelerating the implementation of ICAO/WMO competency and qualification standards and QMS; (b) addressing the emerging institutional and technological challenges associated with the ICAO Global Air Navigation Plan; and (c) strengthening the sustainability and competitiveness of aeronautical meteorological service provision through improved cost recovery mechanisms and suitable business models for service delivery frameworks.
EC-68 endorsed an action plan for achieving the AeMP goals of enhanced compliance by Members with the WMO and ICAO requirements for the provision of aeronautical meteorological services to aviation that includes:
Quality Management System
Competence of aeronautical meteorological personnel (AMP); Qualification of aeronautical meteorological forecasters (AMF)
Raising awareness and impact assessment of the ICAO GANP and ASBU
Development of improved guidance material
Continuous support in the development of regulatory provisions together with ICAO
Long-term planning for the AeMP (by 2030)
Update of the Working Arrangements between WMO and ICAO
EC-68 agreed also with the proposal for enhancing the cooperation between the CAeM, CAS and CBS in the advancement of science and research in support of the future global air traffic management (ATM). The need for enhanced meteorological information delivery has been recognized as a key enabler in several ATM areas and applications, which assumes the migration from research to operations of new solutions and capabilities in observing and forecasting of critical MET conditions for the aircraft operations. In order to mobilize and streamline the research efforts, EC-68 agreed with the proposal for organizing a large-scale WMO scientific event in 2017 dedicated to the research in the field of aeronautical meteorology.
Two key events of the AvRDP were organized in July 2016 at the Hong Kong Observatory (HKO): the Aviation Nowcasting Training Workshop (20-22 July 2016), and AvRDP Scientific Steering Committee (SSC, 22-23 July 2016). The objective of the Training Workshop was to provide nowcasting and mesoscale technology training to interested staff of WMO Members in response to the need for the advancement of aviation meteorological services in the 0-6 hour nowcasting time frame. The Workshop was attended by 22 participants, 5 trainers and from ten WMO Member States. The participants were introduced to Radar & Satellite-based nowcasting techniques, aviation mesoscale NWP and seamless nowcast approach. Examples of nowcasting methodology development were given from the SESAR, CAN-NOW (Canadian Airport Nowcasting), HKO Nowcasting System – SWIRLS. The SSC Meeting objective was to deliver an update on where the AvRDP project stands with respect to its schedule and raise issues affecting progress (if any) by project participants. The meeting also discussed the future of the AvRDP in the light of the recommendations given by the EC-68.
Information about the AvRDP can be found on the dedicated website hosted by the HKO.
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) organized an ICAO/WMO SIGMET Workshop, from 27 to 30 June 2016 in Tokyo, Japan. The workshop was coordinated with ICAO and was a contribution to the international effort to improve the provision of SIGMET service to international air navigation which is aligned with the WMO priorities for the current financial period. The workshop objective was to assist aeronautical meteorological service providers in the Asia/Pacific Region, especially those within the coverage of JMA’s meteorological satellite Himawari-8, in improving the competency of their aeronautical meteorological forecasters for issuance of SIGMET information. More information about workshop hereandhere.
Pilot Project on SIGMET coordination in Southeast Asia
Singapore Meteorological Service hosted the kick-off meeting of the Pilot project on SIGMET coordination from 25 to 26 May 2016. Five meteorological watch offices (MWO) Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore participate in this pilot project with support from the Japan Meteorological Agency and Hong Kong Observatory. The operational phase of the pilot project commences in October 2016. MASA Aeronautical Activities 2015 - 2017
Since the November 2012 applicability target established by ICAO for the implementation of QMS for aeronautical MET service provision, the Meteorological Association of Southern Africa (MASA), has managed through its programmes to ensure that at least nine Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries will achieve compliance with the QMS requirements including ISO 9000 certification for their aviation MET service providers - partially or fully. This goal has been achieved with the ninth member, Madagascar, obtaining its ISO 9001:2008 certification for its international airport through ASCENA.
Other MASA activities in aeronautical meteorology include:
A Competency Assessment Training Workshop held in Lusaka, Zambia in August 2014 which assisted most of the countries to implement competency assessment in their organizations.
A SIGMET Training Workshop was also conducted by MASA in July 2015 and attended by fourteen (14) SADC countries which addressed most of the gaps identified by the ICAO regional report on the SIGMET test conducted in November 2014.
In addition to the nine MASA members who obtained ISO certification, six members in the region are still struggling to achieve compliance with the QMS requirements. According to plans which were shared by participants during the last training workshop, at least three Members may be ISO certified before the end of 2016. Moreover, a number of members have been or will be seeking re-certification by the end of 2016. The following outcomes have been reported to Directors at the MASA annual general meeting (AGM):
Regional training programmes for the new ISO 9001:2015.
Twinning partnership strategies as adopted by the 3rd AMCOMET meeting.
Roles and responsibilities of the meteorological authority and the meteorological services providers should be clearly stated in the legislation.
Establish strong national relationships with civil aviation counterparts so that aeronautical meteorology related issues are properly handled.
Improve SIGMET procedures.
Prepare for the migration to the new ICAO meteorological information exchange model (IWXXM)
MASA is dedicated and determined to meet the new WMO standard on the required qualification of aeronautical meteorological forecasters before the applicability date of 1 December 2016. Together with the RA I President, RTC-Pretoria and RTC-Kenya, there have been numerous attempts to evaluate the compliance of the SADC Countries in order to assess and assist where necessary. The MASA Management Board and AGM have once again stressed the importance of continued improvement of aeronautical meteorology in the region, and continue to work with regional development partners to ensure improved service to aviation stakeholders in the region.
Expert Team on Aviation, Science and Climate (ET-ASC)
The ET-ASC provided input and participated in several global and regional meetings on the subject of aviation science and climate, including:
UQAM/ICAO Workshop on Climate and Aviation, Montreal, Canada, September 2014
ICAO Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) Workshop on Climate and Aviation, Washington DC, United States, February 2015
ICAO Workshop on Partnerships and Challenges in Montreal, Canada in April 2015
Airbus Workshop on Climate impact on Aviation, Toulouse, France, April 2015
Airbus Group Environmental Managers Meeting, Hamburg, Germany, December 2015
Production of a White Paper for the ICAO CAEP Sub-Group Meeting in February 2016 (delivered in late-2015 with the help from the entire team)
The ET also provided support to Members through the following activities:
Presentations to the European Conference on Meteorology for Aviation (ECMA-15) in Vienna, Austria in October 2015
Presentation to the Users Meeting at the DWD HQ in Offenbach, Germany on Climate Impacts on Aviation in November 2015
Presentation to the Users Meeting of Meteo-Swiss in December 2015 on the same subject
Preparatory talks with Eurocontrol, Airbus and ICAO on a global workshop on mitigation of Climate Impacts on Aviation, tentatively planned for 2017 (as part of a WMO Scientific Event on aeronautical meteorology)
Support to the Progress meeting and training event of the Aviation Research Demonstration Project (AvRDP) in Hong Kong, China in July 2016.
Expert Team on Education, Training and Competency (ET-ETC)
ET-ETC had its first meeting conjointly with the ET on Governance (ET-GOV) in Wellington, New Zealand, from 30 Nov to 3 Dec 2015.
The ET-ETC work plan for 2016 includes the following key tasks (amongst others):
Prepare guidance material on AMP second-level competencies for formal publication
ET-ETC member Andrea Henderson (Australian Bureau of Meteorology) has prepared the first draft of a WMO Guide on Competency. At the 27th session of the WMO EC Panel of Experts on Education and Training, in Italy from 14 to 18 March 2016, Andrea and co-chair Chris Webster (MetService of New Zealand) were selected for a task team on this Guide.
Support Members and training institutes in achieving compliance with the qualification requirement for aeronautical meteorological forecasters (AMF), which becomes a WMO standard with applicability date of 1 December 2016.
ET-ETC has compiled a flow-chart which has now been translated and widely distributed to focal points, Regional Training Centres, Permanent Representatives, and the wider educational community.
More information about the available guidance on the implementation of the AMF qualification standard is available here
Expert Team on Governance (ET-GOV) In coordination with ICAO, the team is responsible for reviewing, updating and/or consolidating existing WMO guidance material in the field of aeronautical meteorological services, as well as developing new governance and cost-recovery related guidance to support the forthcoming changes in the MET service provision including its further globalization and regionalization. ET-GOV will also contribute to the development of WMO data policies related to the System Wide Information Management (SWIM), collecting and sharing of best national practices on governance arrangements, and coordinating the evolution of WMO regulatory material on aeronautical MET in line with ICAO Annex 3 developments. Ongoing activities of ET-GOV include:
Review and update of WMO Documents
Update of two WMO reference documents on aeronautical MET service: WMO-No.731, Guide on Meteorological Observing and Information Distribution Systems for Aviation Weather Services, and WMO-No.732, Guide to Practices for Meteorological Offices Serving Aviation.
Qualification of oversight personnel
Work has commenced on the development of guidance and collection of current practices with regard to qualifications of personnel performing safety oversight in the context of the ICAO Universal Safety Audit Oversight Programme (USOAP).
Regionalization of Hazardous Weather services
The issue of regionalization of hazardous weather forecasting for aviation is complex and, to some, controversial. ET-GOV is presently gathering information about current service models around the world. This study will start by examining examples of aviation forecast service delivery in larger countries including the Russian Federation, Canada, China, United States and Australia. The next step will be to engage stakeholders from the international aviation community to get their views on the advantages and disadvantages of the different models which exist today in order to develop relevant guidance based on identified good practices.
Aviation MET Service provision global survey
A questionnaire will be circulated to aviation MET focal points of WMO Members with the intention of gathering feedback on aeronautical MET service provision from a global perspective. ET-GOV is working closely with the ET-CCP to design the questionnaire and to determine the most effective way to distribute it. ET-GOV and ET-CCP, assisted by the Secretariat, will work together to administer the survey and to analyze the results.
Expert Team on Information and Services for Aviation (ET-ISA)
ET-ISA is the successor of two preceding CAeM teams which have focused their activities on the development and evaluation of new MET services for the aerodrome terminal area in support to air traffic management (ATM) and on the MET information exchange. The team has been successful in raising ICAO's awareness on the need for defining specific requirements for these new services. The current ET-ISA work programme includes many activities to be carried out in collaboration with ICAO regarding all new services emerging from the implementation of the MET components of the ASBU methodology of ICAO’s GANP. The work programme also includes SWIM-related and MET information exchange tasks, which will contribute to the integration of the MET information in the future aviation system. The team comprises members from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology (BoM), Belgocontrol, South Africa Weather Service, United States National Weather Service, Hong Kong Observatory (HKO), Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) and Meteo-France. The team has a strong connection with the ICAO MET panel working groups with several ET members represented, as well as with national or regional ATM organizations (State Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSP), Eurocontrol, FAA and others). This allows ET-ISA work in close collaboration with the ATM community.
Expert Team on Communication, Cooperation and Partnership (ET-CCP)
The first meeting of ET-CCP was hosted by the Aviamettelecom of Roshydromet at Saint-Petersburg, Russian Federation from 16 to 18 May 2016. The main objectives of the ET-CCP are related to the following needs identified by the CAeM:
Improve the outreach with respect to CAeM activities and issues – the idea for a regular newsletter should be regarded as one approach in this direction.
Work closely with the regional associations in monitoring and evaluation to improve the knowledge of what is happening in the region.
Promote the communication with stakeholders, e.g., to raise the importance of getting MET experts involved stakeholders' meetings, in particular in view of the GANP and ASBU planning and implementation.
Improve the understanding of the needs of the industry; identify and raise awareness relevant best practices.
Based on these objectives, ET-CCP work programme includes several major activities during 2016 and 2017, such as: to support the organization of regional conferences on meteorology for aviation aimed at raising awareness of the developments stemming from the ICAO GANP and ASBU and their potential impact on the MET service providers; to assist in conducting a global survey (together with ET-GOV) in order to analyze the existing institutional arrangements and business models in the Member States; to establish a system of aviation MET focal points of the WMO Members in order to improve regular contacts and feedback on the CAeM activities and achievements; to promote different cooperation service delivery models being developed in the WMO and ICAO regions and to highlight their benefits in terms of efficiency and capacity development for the provision of high quality aviation MET services to the various stakeholders. European Conference on Meteorology for Aviation (ECMA-2015)
At its 16th Session held in Helsinki in September 2013, the WMO Regional Association VI (Europe) considered the vigorous developments towards a more efficient organization of the air traffic management (ATM) in the Region as formulated in the European ATM Master Plan endorsed by the European Council as a key element of the European Single European Sky (SES) initiative. The Association noted that the SES regulations, and their extension SES 2+, would have a major impact and would require changes in the way meteorological services are provided as part of the air navigation services by most RA VI Members. The Association agreed on the need to gain a greater understanding of these issues to better inform future discussions and requested the WMO Secretariat to organize a regional conference that would also build on the outcomes of the WMO/ICAO MET Divisional Meeting, 2014. Consequently, the European Conference on Meteorology for Aviation (ECMA-2015) was organized as a joint venture between the CAeM and WMO RA VI (Europe) and was kindly hosted by the ZAMG and Austrocontrol in Vienna on 13 and 14 October 2015.
The main objective of ECMA-2015, raising awareness of the GANP and ASBU developments and their potential impacts, has been achieved. The conference provided the opportunity for hearing from different stakeholders and RA VI Members. RA VI and CAeM with their respective subsidiary bodies should analyze the key messages to derive future coordinated actions. The complexity of the European aviation landscape is a big challenge, however, it also offers many opportunities for the NMHSs and other AMSPs. There are no ready recipes about which business model is best, but we could better describe options with their “pros and cons” and share good practices. The GANP and ASBU guided developments toward the future ATM at global and regional level will require research and development in the MET and the available expertise of WMO should be better utilized. WMO should also embrace the ICAO slogan “No country left behind”. A strong message from ECMA-2015 is that regional cooperation is the key that would help our mission as a vital air navigation stakeholder. Safety Management System (SMS) Workshop, St. Petersburg
The International Workshop on Oversight of Flight Safety Management System in Meteorological Respect was held in the headquarters of the Russian Geographical Society in St. Petersburg from 29 to 30 September 2015. It was hosted by the Aviamettelecom of Roshydromet and the WMO Regional Training Centre (RTC) in the Russian Federation in cooperation with the WMO and the ICAO. the QMS and the SMS have similar methods and techniques, however, their objectives differ. The QMS in aeronautical meteorology is designed to ensure high level service quality in meeting aviation user requirements, whereas the SMS is focused on aviation safety, ensuring that the service delivery levels comply with the required safety levels. It was well understood that the implementation of SMS for the MET service provision is not a mandatory requirement by the ICAO, however, the SMS elements relevant to MET could contribute to the overall safety management by the Member States' organizations concerned.
The workshop was attended by 65 aeronautical meteorologists, representing CIS countries, including Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation, and supported by experts from WMO, ICAO and Austria. Throughout the workshop, participants viewed materials on safety oversight currently in use in the WMO/ICAO community which clarify the Members’ responsibilities and expectations, effectively guiding their efforts to implement the elements of the safety management systems in the provision of MET services to aviation in their countries.
Following the Conjoint ICAO/WMO MET Divisional Meeting (Montreal, July 2014), the Air Navigation Commission established the Meteorology Panel (METP). Information about the composition and terms of reference is available on the MET Panel public website: http://www.icao.int/airnavigation/metp/Pages/default.aspx. The scope of METP work is to collaboratively determine operational requirements for aeronautical MET service provision as an enabling function for a future globally interoperable air traffic management system and identify solutions, in coordination with WMO, to effectively and efficiently fulfil the requirements through sound scientific and/or technological capabilities.
In view of the working arrangements between ICAO and WMO, a nominee from WMO is an ex officio Member of the METP, securing close cooperation in all aeronautical MET service provision activities of the two organizations. Currently, Dimitar Ivanov, C/AEM, is the METP member nominated by WMO.
The CAeM, as the main WMO body dealing with the application of meteorology to aviation, provides broad support to all METP activities through a number of experts from WMO Members States who are members or advisers to members of the MET Panel. In particular, CAeM provides inputs through its members to the following major tasks of the MET Panel:
Development of new provisions for Space Weather;
Improved provisions for information on the release of radioactive material in the atmosphere;
Development of a new system for information on weather hazards (to replace the current SIGMET/AIRMET information);
Development of the ICAO weather exchange model and the migration to XML
Future development of the International Airways Volcano Watch (IAVW);
Restructuring of the ICAO Annex 3;
Development of advanced information and services in support of future ATM (TBO, MSTA, etc);
Improved guidance on cost recovery, business models, etc.
CAeM experts participate actively in the meetings of the MET Panel working groups and their "work streams". The close coordination and collaboration between CAeM and ICAO METP, based on the broad principles established in the Working Arrangements between WMO and ICAO, will continue in the future in order to ensure consistency and effectiveness of the technical and institutional regulatory and guidance material promulgated by the two organizations. Volcanic Ash-related activities
CAeM continues its contribution to the international effort of mitigating the volcanic ash impact on aviation industry. In October 2015, the 7th WMO International Workshop on Volcanic Ash was held in Anchorage, Alaska, USA. The event was attended by nearly 100 participants representing the scientific community, users, regulators and industry representatives. The aim of the workshop was the improvement of the scientific aspects of the International Airways Volcano Watch including:
The understanding and use of ground-based volcanic monitoring;
Detecting, analysing and tracking volcanic clouds;
Mr Greg Brock joined the Secretariat on 27th June 2016 as Scientific Officer/AEM. He replaced Mr Scylla Sillayo, who retired from WMO in August 2015. The aviation MET community knows Greg as he has served as Regional Officer (MET) at the ICAO EUR/NAT Office in Paris and Chief of the MET Section at ICAO HQ, Montreal. And, prior to working with ICAO, Greg worked for the UK Met Office. Greg has a broad knowledge and experience in aviation MET matters both at national and international level and his presence as part of the WMO Secretariat AeM team will definitely help us tackle the challenges we are facing nowadays.
Mr Yi Wang joined the Secretariat on 5th September 2016 for a three month internship with the Aeronautical Meteorology Division of WDS Department. Yi is a recent PhD graduate from mechanical department, Imperial College, London, UK (April 2016). His research topic was “mechanical performance of transparent laminated materials for aircraft” and he was involved in designing novel laminated windshield for aircraft’s cockpit. He will be helping the AeM Division with the CAeM global survey on institutional arrangements for aeronautical meteorological service provision to be conducted in October/November this year.