When fast intervention means saving lives and when patients have to be evacuated from remote locations. emergency services across Europe rely on the speed and versatility of helicopters. however adverse weather conditions or other factors such as smoke offered prevent helicopters from reaching the hospital or helipad, because only non-precision approaches are available.

EGNOS the European geostationary navigation overlay service offers enhanced vertical precision and integrity improving safety, accessibility in efficiency for operators pilots and helipads across Europe.
Here’s how it works:
Egnos is Europe’s first venture into the field of satellite navigation and will be complemented by Galileo Europe’s global satellite navigation system.
EGNOS improves positioning measurements using a network of more than 40 reference stations in 20 countries.
These ground stations pick up signals from GPS satellites which are centrally processed.
The accuracy of the original GPS signals is determined and factors such as ionospheric disturbances are taken into account.
These data are incorporated into Egnos signals and sent to which three geostationary satellites.
The satellites then relay the signals back to users the result is substantially improved horizontal and vertical positioning accuracy and data integrity.

To test the improved vertical guidance within the framework of the hedge research project series of test flights took place in June 2010 at La Cerdanya airport in the Pyrenees. the purpose of the flights was to test both the modified avionics and the Egnos procedure. during these trials a test made to check that LPV approach is compatible with an Egnos signal receiver, using a 6 degrees of a slope in the approach. a number of approaches were conducted which confirmed that the vertical guidance offered by Egnos leads to a substantial reduction in the decision height, making the airfield helipad accessible in poor weather conditions. this will make a real difference to helicopter emergency and medical flights. the approach plate that we have designed for La Cerdanya provides a significant improvement in comparison with the VFR normal operation. Egnos is a navigation aid that will considerably improve safety for helicopter approaches. Egnos has been certified for civil aviation since 2011 and procedures are being developed all over Europe. Egnos can provide accessibility, safety and cost savings in a single proven solution by delivering high precision with a low investment.

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