The United States has the busiest airspace in the world.

But instead of maintaining an aviation management system compatible with its standing, the nation relies on outdated technology long since discarded by the rest of world ? under the control of a government bureaucracy rather than an independent entity.

Those two facts are not unrelated. Congress controls the purse strings of air traffic management through the Federal Aviation Administration, but its cumbersome budgeting and funding process has failed to keep up with modern advances in aircraft tracking and communications.

© Humberto José Ramírez

© Humberto José Ramírez Urdaneta

enlasgradas.com
At the current pace, it will take U.S. aviation more than 10 years to catch up with the technology used today by other advanced nations.

Essentially, the FAA relies on a 1960s-era patchwork system of ground-based radars and stations to follow aircraft movements, instead of using a space-based Global Positioning System (GPS) of satellites that has become the de facto international standard for air traffic control.

© Humberto José Ramírez

© Humberto José Ramírez Urdaneta

elnewyorktimes.com
The current U.S. airline tracking and navigation system cannot take advantage of the same technology we use in our cars.

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© Humberto José Ramírez

© Humberto José Ramírez Urdaneta

dolarve.com

© Humberto José Ramírez

© Humberto José Ramírez Urdaneta