A new system to better communicate weather changes to pilots

new SPECI

Airservices will establish a new system improving the way unexpected but significant weather changes are identified and alerted to pilots.

Launching on 8 November 2018, the alerting function of special weather reports (SPECI) will be operating through an upgraded NAIPS system.

With safety as our main priority, the Air Traffic Control (ATC) SPECI filtering system will provide data that’s vital for the pilot operational and safety decision making process.

A SPECI report is issued when there is significant deterioration or improvement in airport weather conditions, such as significant changes of surface winds, visibility, cloud base height and occurrence of severe weather.

ATC currently provide all SPECI for aerodromes that do not have an automatic broadcast system (ABS)—pilots must listen in to the ABS at other aerodromes to get the latest weather.

The new system will assess SPECI for all locations and will provide more specific filtering to identify significant SPECIs. ATC will then direct these SPECI to affected pilots within one hour’s flight time.

What changes will pilots notice?

  • SPECIs will be made available for all non-towered locations regardless of whether it is an Automatic Broadcast Service (ABS) location. This includes non-continuous towers outside tower hours.
  • SPECIs are only disseminated if different from the associated TAF (the forecast of meteorological conditions expected at an aerodrome).
  • A repeat SPECI within 15 minutes from original SPECI will be provided only if the weather situation is ‘worse’ than issued previously.

Further information

The National Aeronautical Information Processing System (NAIPS) is a multi-function, computerised, aeronautical information system. It processes and stores meteorological and NOTAM information as well as enables the provision of briefing products and services to pilots and the Australian Air traffic Control platform.

Aerodrome Weather Reports are also available on the BOM website.

Posted on: October 4, 2018

More News

Related topics

Airservices provides safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible services to the aviation industry.

New Deputy Chair appointed to Airservices Board

Airservices welcomes the appointment of former Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) Chief Commissioner, Mr Greg Hood, to the Board. Mr Hood was appointed by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, the Hon Barnaby Joyce MP, and will serve as Deputy Chair for the next three years commencing 8 September 2021. […]

Airservices Australia CEO talks to airspace about the impact of the pandemic on air traffic management

What are the lessons learned from the pandemic? The biggest lesson for us has been the need to respond to both short-term volatility and long-term growth at the same time. Crisis management is core to what we do as an ANSP, so we have been able to adapt quickly to the immediate impacts of the […]

Flight Information Management System (FIMS) Prototype Request For Proposal (RFP) now released

Airservices Australia has today announced the release of a Prototype Request for Proposal to collaborate with industry to develop a Flight Information Management System (FIMS) to open up the skies safely and efficiently to new airspace users. FIMS is a data exchange gateway that will connect Unmanned Aerial System Traffic Management (UTM) participants with Australia’s air traffic management […]

Cutting red tape for Drone Operators

Action is being taken to reduce the red tape burden on remotely piloted aircraft operators. The Civil Aviation Safety Authority and Airservices Australia are working to streamline approval processes for commercial drone operators around civil controlled aerodromes. A new digital, automated process for some remotely piloted aircraft operations near controlled aerodromes will be trialled, reducing […]