345 Updates to the Changes Included in Amendment 78 to Annex 3: Meteorological Service for International Air Navigation

Monday, 8 January 2018
Exhibit Hall 3 (ACC) (Austin, Texas)
M. Pat Murphy, FAA, Washington, DC; and M. K. Peterson, T. J. Helms Jr., L. Burch, and G. M. Porter

In 2014, the Air Navigation Bureau (ANB) of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) completed a major internal reorganization. Included in this reorganization was the disbanding of the Meteorological Section within the ANB and the establishment of the Meteorology (MET) Panel under the ICAO Air Navigation Commission (ANC).

In 2015, ICAO instituted a 2-year amendment cycle for ICAO Annex 3 - Meteorological Service for International Air Navigation beginning with Amendment 78. Through the Job Cards assigned by the ANC, the MET Panel is responsible for a significant amount of input to the initial draft of Amendment 78 that became available in early 2017.

Changes to Annex 3 in Amendment 78 include the Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs) for space weather information and SARPs necessary to improve the provision of information about the release of radioactive material (RRM) into the atmosphere. Recently, changes were introduced to the space weather and RRM work streams due to guidance from the ANC and from the scientific community.

The ANC requested guidance on the optimum number of space weather information centers necessary for global operations despite the ongoing audit by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) of space weather information capabilities at centers around the world. The space weather work stream under the Meteorological Information and Service Development (MISD) working group agreed that two global centers will conjointly provide information on high frequency (HF) radio communications, GNSS-based navigation and surveillance, and radiation exposure at flight levels. Additionally, four regional centers will provide information in support of the global centers on GNSS and HF communications for a designated area of responsibility. These numbers will be reassessed no later than 2027.

During the July 2017 face-to-face meeting for the RRM work stream, a member presented a report from the Inter-Agency Committee on Radiological and Nuclear emergencies (IACRNE) SIGMET Task Group. One key conclusion from this report was that the initial radioactive cloud SIGMET volume can be defined by a cylinder covering all flight levels and with a fixed radius (i.e. not time dependent) of up to 30 km. This corresponds to “phase 1” of the RRM CONOPS and is already reflected in the addition of the cylinder descriptor in Annex 3 draft amendment 78, which is expected effective in November 2018. Planned future incorporation of Atmospheric Transport Dispersion Modeling (ATDM) of radioactive material was expected to be completed in phases 2 and 3. However, even though this research is currently being done in Europe, the meeting attendees could not formally support the development of an ICAO/WMO ATDM system without clear global user requirements. Additionally, source term information for the ATDMs is still largely uncertain. With the deletion of phases 2 and 3 from the MET Panel job cards, work on the RRM work stream is complete.

- Indicates paper has been withdrawn from meeting
- Indicates an Award Winner