EuroControl Controlled Takeoff Times "Slots"

The European Commission nominated EUROCONTROL as Network Manager in July 2011 until 31 December 2019. EUROCONTROL will seek re-designation for the period beyond 2019. The European ATC network includes all the European Union’s 28 and EUROCONTROL’s 40 Member States, as well as cooperating Flight Information Regions, FIRs adjacent to this region define the Integrated Flight Planning System Zone, IFTS. The Network Manager Operations Centre is responsible for managing the balance of demand vs. capacity and coordinating adequate responses, to ATC events such as work stoppages and severe weather disruptions. This operation receives, processes and distributes up to 35,000 flight plans a day and covers over 500 European airports.

Inside the IFTS, operators are expected to use a route planning tool called the Route Availability Document, RAD. This document provides a fully coordinated routing scheme to operators that will maximize capacity and reduce complexity by defining restrictions that prevent disruption to the organized system. EuroControl’s Network Manager will apply flow control measures to flights that depart from or arrive into an airport inside the ATFCM area or enter the ATFCM area after departing from an adjacent Flight Information Region. Compliance with these “Slots” is mandatory for all operators

EXCEPT:

• Flights carrying Head of State or equivalent status

• Flights conducting search and rescue operations

• Flights authorised by States Authorities to be exempt

• Fights carrying a life-critical emergency evacuation

• Flights conducting engaged in fire-fighting

Where to Find Help

EuroControl maintains a helpdesk for operators. There is a website and phone-in options. Whenever possible, customers should use the E-helpdesk to contact the Central Flow Helpdesk services. For those who do not have access to the internet the Help Desk telephone number is:++32 (0) 2 745.19.01. Callers are requested to provide the flight’s call sign before stating the problem. This enables the HelpDesk to display the relevant data concerning the flight before any problem solving takes place. Only one request per flight should be submitted.

EuroControl also maintains a website called Network Operations Portal, NOP. This will display a wealth of information such as current delays in graphical form, planning calendar and details on EuroControl functions. Here is a link