ESA title

Strong support shown for FlySafe Initiative


ESTEC, 29th May 2008

Close to 70 participants from Dutch, Belgium, French and German military aviation and from Dutch, Belgian, Portuguese civil aviation representatives, including airlines, pilot associations and Airport Authorities attended The FlySafe final presentation on 29 May at ESA's ESTEC facility in Noordwijk, The Netherlands.

FlySafe ws openingThe main objective of FlySafe is to prove the viability of an integrated space and non space system capable of reducing bird strike risks for air forces. FlySafe activities were initiated in partnership with Dutch, Belgium, French and German Air Forces and in cooperation with European industry and research institutes during the Preparatory Phase of the ARTES 20 Integrated Applications Promotion (IAP) in 2007.

FlySafe WSThe final presentation opened with a short introduction by ESA on the awareness activities that originated the ESA FlySafe initiative, followed by presentations by Dutch and Belgian Air Forces - FlySafe user representatives - illustrating the status of their operations before and after the FlySafe initiative, including the requirements for the FlySafe initiative.

The FlySafe industrial consortium represented by KNMI, SARA and the University of Amsterdam presented the newly-developed FlySafe system. It combines space (namely earth observation, positioning and telecommunication satellites) and existing terrestrial assets through a system of system approach to deliver information on bird migration at various spatial and time resolutions. Two main demonstration services are currently provided by the system:

  • Hourly updated visualisation of bird migration densities covering geographic areas of Belgium and the Netherlands
  • Hourly updated three-day forecasts for Belgium and the Netherlands (see

Live demonstrations of these two services were shown during the event.

The Netherlands and Belgium Air Forces acknowledged the achievements of the FlySafe initiative stressing that, based on these results, pre-operational services will follow.

A representative from the Finnish Meteorological Institute also encouraged ESA to pursue further expansion of the current FlySafe coverage area and declared his support and commitment for this purpose.

Positive feedback was also gathered from representatives of the Lisbon, Schiphol, Maastricht Aachen, Oostende, Brussels, Liège and Charleroi Airports, as well as from the Dutch Airline Pilots Association, Dutch civil aviation authorities and KLM. They all expressed their appreciation of FlySafe’s impressive results as well as their interest and support in follow-on ESA initiatives on bird strike risk reduction for civil aviation.

“The strong interest and positive feedbacks received from Military and Civil Aviation Authorities during the discussion session are an encouragement for continuing ESA IAP initiative in support of Air Forces for the consolidation phase of the bird strike risk reduction services and to open a new front to meet the demand of civil aviation authorities” says Amnon Ginati, Head of ESA’s Integrated Applications Programme.

ESA acknowledges all FlySafe Partners and Team including the Belgian Air Force, French Air Force, German Air and Royal Netherlands Air Force and UvA(NL), KNMI (NL), SARA (NL), TNO (NL), SOVON (NL), IFV(D), IDA (D), RMI (B), SOI (CH), Meteo France (F), Thales RES (F), TAS (F). ESA extends special thanks to the ESA Belgian and Dutch Delegates, M. Wagner and B. Meijvogel.

Presentations given at the FlySafe final presentation are now available for download by clicking here or on the presentations link located in the top right column of this page. Links to relevant FlySafe resources are also listed under the related links section.


17 June 2009
Last updated at 04 November 2021 - 06:20