West's radar and tracking systems Y2K OK

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West's radar and tracking systems Y2K OK

Mike Sadava Journal Staff Writer Edmonton

Some of the uncertainty about flying into the dawn of the new millennium has been removed within Canada.

Nav Canada, the non-profit corporation that runs the country's air traffic control system, announced Monday that recent tests of the radar and tracking system for Western Canada at Edmonton International Airport passed with flying colours.

The clocks were rolled ahead to Jan. 1, 2000, from Dec. 31, 1999, and nothing happened, David Honkanen of Y2K project for Nav Canada said from Ottawa.

Because the systems are virtually identical in the seven control centres across Canada, it means that the country's main air traffic control system is Y2K-compatible, although there are still tests to be done on new equipment in Toronto. Canada's airspace over the north Atlantic Ocean will be tested in Gander, Nfld., next month. "When we got to the clocks rolling to Jan. 1, 2000, it was really boring -- all the systems worked well," Honkanen said.

While the test at Edmonton was done during the wee hours of the morning using simulated flights, the clocks were rolled ahead in Vancouver over two days while the airport was operating and everything went smoothly, he said.

Although Honkanen can't speak for other countries, there is a smooth connection with the control systems over airspace of United States, United Kingdom and Iceland, and all these countries have tested each other's systems, he said.

Nav Canada has budgeted $20 million for dealing with the Y2K bug, which refers to the possibility of computer chips malfunctioning in the year 2000 because the internal clocks only have two digits in the year.

How confident is Honkanen that there won't be any Y2K problems?

"I have a ticket that puts me on a flight across the North Atlantic at midnight on Dec. 31," he said. He'll be flying to Heathrow and then back again to the communications centre, hopefully for a relaxing day, he said. But Nav Canada still has expanded the contingency plans it always has in case of system problems, he said.

-- Norm (nwo@hotmail.com), March 30, 1999


Lies, all lies, I tell you! It's a KONSPIRACY!!!

-- lie like a dog (lies@more.lies), March 31, 1999.

Already posted by Rachel, along with info re UK air traffic control:


-- Old Git (anon@spamproblems.com), March 31, 1999.

The following recent post looks at THIS country's air traffic control system. Not a pretty picture. <:)=

Aviation update

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), March 31, 1999.

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