Air Navigation Regional Directorate Centre-North - Description


The largest air traffic control region in Spain, extending from Castile-La Mancha to the maritime zone of the Bay of Biscay.

Description of the Regional Directorate

The Centre-North Regional Directorate manages air traffic (ATM) services in the area included in the Madrid FIR/UIR, to the north of parallel 39. This air space includes the autonomous regions of Galicia, Asturias, Cantabria, Basque Country, Navarre, Castile-León, La Rioja and Madrid, as well as parts of Castile-La Mancha, Extremadura and Aragón; it also includes the maritime zone of the Bay of Biscay and the coast of Galicia.

In the Centre-North Region there are six Terminal Control Areas (TMA) -Galicia, Asturias, Santander, Bilbao, Madrid and Zaragoza - and three Controlled Traffic Areas (CTA) -San Sebastián, Pamplona and Vitoria. These cover approaches to the majority of their airports.

As the largest in terms of national territory, this region boasts (CNS, ATS and AIS) a large number of airports. These are: A Coruña, Asturias, Bilbao, Burgos (only CNS and AIS) , Huesca-Pirineos, León, Logroño-Agoncillo, Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas, Madrid-Cuatro Vientos, Madrid-Getafe (military), Madrid-Torrejón, Pamplona, Salamanca, San Sebastián, Santander, Santiago, Valladolid, Vigo, Vitoria and Zaragoza. 

Madrid Control Centre

The headquarters of the Regional Directorate of the Centre-North Region is the Madrid Air Traffic Control Centre (ACC), situated next to the air base-airport at Torrejón de Ardoz (Madrid). The ACC also provides en route air traffic management (ATC) for the Madrid FIR/UIR and for approaches (TMA) to the airports in the autonomous region of Madrid.

This control centre is unusual in that it provides centralised services to the whole country, as well as the appropriate local services for its own region, Centre-North. These include the following Centralised Systems of Data Communication: REDAN (air navigation data network), CIDIN (common data interchange network), CRAMI (automatic integrated message relay centre); the Centralised ATC Systems as Central Chains of the SACTA (automatic air traffic control system), and the EGNOS navigation system by satellite (European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service).

The construction of the Madrid Central Control building was completed in 1979 and, following the move from the old ACC at Paracuellos del Jarama, it commenced operations in February 1991.


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