After running more than two years behind schedule, Airservices Australia and the Department of Defence have reached an agreement with Thales Australia for the AIR 5431 Phase 3 project, which will integrate the nation’s civil and military air traffic management systems.
The government said under the project, Australia’s skies are to become even safer with a reduction in travel times and delays for travellers following the implementation of the world’s most advanced air traffic management system technology.
The new technology will track all commercial and military flights in the 11 per cent of global airspace managed by Australia.
Under OneSKY, Australia will be better able to handle forecast air traffic growth, which will reduce congestion and open up more efficient air routes to reduce flight times, fuel costs and greenhouse emissions.
Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne said OneSKY was an important development for the future of Australian aviation and Australian jobs.
"The $1.2 billion OneSKY project will transform Australia’s air traffic management system and national infrastructure in the sky, ensuring the travelling public arrive at their destination safely and with minimal delays," Minister Pyne said.
"The OneSKY project will support 450 specialist high-tech jobs in Melbourne, building Australian skills in complex project management, systems engineering and software development.
"Around 75 per cent of the acquisition cost and 95 per cent of the ongoing annual support costs will be to Australian companies."
Once implemented, Airservices Australia and Defence will share technology and information. It will manage forecasted growth of air traffic movement in Australia, by as much as 60 per cent by 2030, minimising delays for the travelling public.
Minister for Defence Marise Payne said OneSKY’s leading-edge technology meant Australia would have the most secure and resilient air traffic network in the world.
"This project will replace the ageing military air traffic management systems and is essential to ensuring our ADF can continue to operate safely in Australia’s airspace," Minister Payne said.
"The integrated system will manage more than 11 per cent of global airspace and some of the world’s busiest air routes."
Minister Payne said the project will now be removed from Defence’s projects of concern list.