“Flying with Space Weather: Auroras to GPS” with Klaus Sievers (IFALPA – International Federation of Airline Pilots´Associations)

Space weather has affected aviation in many ways; effects include short-wave radio disturbance, single-event effects leading to upsets in electronics, Satellite Navigation systems disturbance via scintillation,  solar radio burst effects on secondary surveillance radar, increased radiation dose at flight altitudes. In November 2018, a long process involving experts from many countries of the world came to a conclusion when the ICAO Air Navigation Commission and the Council of ICAO, the International Civil Aviation Organization, approved and published provisions in ICAO Annex 3 and guidance material on Space Weather in ICAO Document 10100. The advisories intend to provide the most up to date information on space weather impacts on aviation. The introduction of space weather in the ICAO framework has been a great achievement. What is still outstanding is the development of procedures that are globally standardized on the application of the advisories, as well as the provision of adequate space weather knowledge to pilots, controllers and other aviation personnel. Recent events are used to illustrate this. The talk will be about space weather for aviation: what´s been achieved – and what needs more work. 

Klaus Sievers flew commercial aircraft for Lufthansa, starting in 1979; then from 1987 to 2016 on the Boeing 747. He became interested in weather, promoting and working to get NCAR convective and cloud-height products onto eFB – via satellite. Other waystations on the journey into “weather” included drafting the “Pilots´ Vision on Weather” for the European Cockpit Association and work on the EASA initiative “Weather information to pilots”. Klaus Sievers represented IFALPA at the ICAO Met Panel from its beginning in 2015, specializing in volcanic ash , sulphur dioxide clouds and space weather.

Webinar was recorded on December 15, 2022