The FAA wants to shift most controller-pilot messages — more than 1.2 million a day — to a digital text-based network. This will be one of the key enablers of the NextGen modernization effort, which requires aircraft to fly satellite-based procedures that are too complex for current ATC communications technology. The agency's Data Communications (Data Comm) program will make it quicker for controllers to send and revise clearances, as well as reducing frequency congestion and allowing the ...

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