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Airspace restrictions to be placed over English Channel as RPA conducts research this summer

PUBLISHED: 10:46 12 April 2019 | UPDATED: 10:51 12 April 2019

Skeldar V-200 RPA (c) Saab Group

Skeldar V-200 RPA (c) Saab Group

© Saab AB

Due to a large Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) conducting atmospheric research over the English Channel this summer, a number of airspace restrictions and a temporary danger area will be put in place from 2 May to 30 August 2019

Four areas of restricted airspace will be implemented by French law, as they fall within French territorial airspace, and a Temporary Danger Area, which lies within high seas airspace in the London FIR.

To reduce the impact on VFR traffic, the CAA is working with its French counterparts to implement Flexible Use of Airspace, allowing restrictions to be turned off and on as the airspace is used by the RPA (which is surveying emission from ships passing through the English Channel).

The French Aeronautical Information Services will deactivate either the north region restrictions (R402 and R403) or south (R401 and EG D098) when not in use. This will allow transits below 1,500ft between the UK and France.

Summer is a popular time for cross-Channel trips so pilots should do a thorough brief when crossing the Channel to familiarise themselves with both nations’ NOTAM and the French law associated with airspace restrictions.

For full details see the UK AIP SUP 016/2019 and the French AIP SUP 081/2019. Note that the French DGAC will submit another AIP SUP for the dates between 01 July and 30 August 2019. https://www.sia.aviation-civile.gouv.fr/pub/media/store/documents/file/l/f/lf_sup_a_2019_102_en.pdf

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