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2020 Technical Symposium Agenda


The ATCA Technical Symposium Programming Committee is diligently working to bring you the 2020 agenda. In the meantime, peruse our 2019 agenda to get a feel for our unique programming.

Check back soon for more information, and we'll see you in Atlantic City, May 12 - 14!


2019 Tech Symposium Agenda 
Last agenda update - May 13
Monday, May 13

8 a.m. - 5 p.m.

AMS Workshop

ATCA is excited to offer an exclusive AMS Workshop, a joint-initiative developed by ATCA and Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU). We have created this professional development curriculum to help aviation professionals like you harness the full capabilities of the FAA Acquisition Management System (AMS). From service analysis and strategic planning to in-service management, this one-day course will equip you with the tools and insight you need to not only effectively navigate the AMS but to maximize your competitive edge. Reserve your seat today through the Tech Symposium registration process. Learn more.

Atlantic 3

3 - 5 p.m. Registration Open Ocean Ballroom
Tuesday, May 14
7 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Registration Open Ocean Ballroom
8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Exhibitor Setup Ocean Ballroom
7:45 a.m. - 5 p.m. Shuttle buses to/from Tech Center Pick-up Location: TBD
9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Tech Center Tuesday
Your ATCA Tech Symposium registration includes admission to Tech Center Tuesday, a one-stop-shop event that gives attendees a look behind the scenes at one of the world's most advanced aviation research and development centers. Tour the Center's labs and facilities and stay up to date by visiting nearly 50 booths presenting all the technology the Tech Center is currently researching and developing. Learn more.
FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center 
6 - 7:30 p.m. Welcome Reception
Sponsored by:

Landshark Bar & Grill
Wednesday, May 15
7 a.m. - 5 p.m. Registration Open Ocean Ballroom
7 a.m. - 4 p.m. Speaker/Moderator Room Open Atlantic 3
7 - 8 a.m. Welcome Coffee & Breakfast 
Coffee Sponsored by:
Ocean Ballroom
8 - 8:30 a.m.
Welcome and Opening Remarks
President and CEO
Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA)

Akbar Sultan
Director, Airspace Operations and Safety Program
NASA Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD)

Shelley Yak
William J. Hughes Technical Center (WJHTC), FAA
Superstar Theater
8:30 - 9 a.m. Fireside Chat
Jay Merkle, Executive Director, UAS Integration Office
Peter F. Dumont, President and CEO, ATCA
Superstar Theater
9 a.m. - 7 p.m. Exhibit Hall Open Ocean Ballroom
9 - 10:30 a.m. 
Aviation Research and Innovation: A Changing Landscape 
Let's admit it. We live in exciting times as we see the Aviation industry change in front of our eyes: unmanned aerial vehicles, commercial space trips, virtual air traffic control towers, AI-powered systems (including electronic flight bags), to name a few innovations disrupting our Aviation landscape. 
Those changes are impacting how we operate, how we think and how we innovate in this industry. In this panel, we explore how our outlook and processes for Aviation Research and Innovation are also transforming in order to keep up with and best leverage the pace of innovation. 
In particular, we explore creative models for public/private/academia partnerships, practical paths towards integration of innovations with existing/legacy systems, and most importantly leveraging the new ways of thinking and executing coming out of the startup (aviation and non-aviation) world and our millennial and post-millennial generations. 

Eric Neiderman, FAA
Nadine Alameh, Open Geospatial Consortium
Chris Allison, Sierra Nevada Corporation Space Systems
Roger Mann, ARCNet
Dennis Sawyer, MITRE
Lee Wilbur, Deloitte
Superstar Theater
10:30 - 11:15 a.m. Refreshment Break with Exhibitors  
Sponsored by:  
Ocean Ballroom
11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Improving National Airspace System (NAS) Resiliency: Innovative Approaches
Today’s aviation operational environment is constantly under threat from internal and external actors. To proactively address these ever-evolving threats, innovative approaches are being implemented across the aviation system to increase resiliency. This session will focus on current resiliency efforts from NAS infrastructure, avionics, and aircraft perspectives. Specifically, these approaches will highlight modeling and simulation activities and technology design considerations. Lessons learned from non-aviation critical infrastructure resiliency efforts will also be discussed.

Moderator: Jeff McCoy, FAA
Jeff Woods, NATCA
Superstar Theater
12:30 - 1:45 p.m. Lunch Buffet Ocean Ballroom & Capriccio
1:45 - 2:15 p.m.

Keynote Presentation
David Rottblatt, Business Development Director & Urban Air Traffic Management Leader, EmbraerX

David Rottblatt will be unveiling the Urban Air Traffic Management (UATM) system concept developed by EmbraerX and its subsidiary, Atech. This procedures-based approach was conceived out of a need to accommodate a broad spectrum of aircraft that will be flying over dense, low altitude environments over the next ten years as a result of Urban Air Mobility (UAM) operations. As part of this process, EmbraerX and Atech have worked with dozens of air traffic controllers, academics, pilots, and industry experts in the creation of this vision. Embraer's concept is a culmination of those discussions, and proposes a phased approach beginning with voice-based communications and evolving towards more autonomous data exchanges.

Superstar Theater
2:15 - 3:15 p.m. Technical Paper Presentations with Live Voting Superstar Theater
3:15 - 4:15 p.m.
Ice Cream Break
Sponsored by:
Ocean Ballroom
4:15 - 5:30 p.m. Evolving NAS Requirements to Integrate Non-Traditional Users

UAS, UTM, UAM, and commercial space are some of the most exciting innovations in our industry right now. We’ve come so far and yet, we still have so far to go in realizing true integration. Integrating these new entrant technologies is perhaps the greatest challenge our industry will ever face. So how will UTM meet ATM? As we move from innovation and vision to implementation, how we as an industry – as a community of ever-changing traditional and non-traditional users – leverage partnerships and effectively collaborate will determine the future of our skies. In some ways, we are starting from scratch, but in many ways, we can utilize traditional business models and existing legacy systems for lessons learned. Will we leverage these exciting new technologies to once again stake claim as the world’s leader in aviation? We are in control of this evolution, but we are at a crossroads. The future of the NAS is in our hands. The time for this discussion is now.

Akbar Sultan, NASA
Bryan Barmore, NASA
Paul Behan, NATCA
Steve Bradford, FAA
Jon Damush, Boeing NeXt
Tom Prevot, Uber
Superstar Theater
5:30 - 7 p.m. Networking Reception with ExhibitorsSponsored by:

Ocean Ballroom
Thursday, May 16
7:30 - 9 a.m.  ATCA Women in Aviation Technology Breakfast
Across aviation's many sectors, women contribute to the success and innovation of the world's airspace each and every day. After very successful events in 2017 and 2018 at ATCA Annual, we're excited to host our first ATCA Women in Aviation Technology Breakfast at the ATCA Tech Symposium to continue providing a nurturing and inclusive environment for women in aviation, and especially tech fields, to network and share their successes, enhance and inspire leadership, and advance their careers within aviation and the aeronautical sciences.

Registration open soon. Click HERE to be added to our announcement list! Due to space limitations, this event is only open to women. You do not have to be a registered ATCA Tech Symposium attendee to register.


8 - 9 a.m.

Welcome Coffee & Breakfast

 Coffee Sponsored by:   

Ocean Ballroom
9 - 11:15 a.m. Speaker/Moderator Room Open  Atlantic 3
8 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Registration Open Ocean Ballroom 
9 a.m. - 12 p.m. Exhibit Hall Open Ocean Ballroom 
9:15 - 10:45 a.m.  Digital Transformation in ATM - How Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning Are Transforming the Human-Centric ATC World

Air traffic is still managed by controllers and aircraft are still managed by pilots, although both leverage automation to support human decisions. LAANC is the first instance of ATC decisions being made by the automation. Accommodation of new airspace entrants will require more automated decisions for both low altitude UAS Traffic Management (UTM) and very high-altitude operations such as balloons, space launches, etc.

This panel will explore the increasing pervasiveness of AI across many aspects of our daily lives and many industries what it will mean for the future ATM environment and the humans in it.

Moderator: Peter F. Dumont, ATCA
Patrick Biltgen, Perspecta
Josh Elliott, Booz Allen Hamilton
Mike Paglione, FAA
Confesor Santiago, NASA
Alice Quinn, Northrop Grumman
Superstar Theatre
10:45 - 11:30 a.m.  Refreshment Break with Exhibitors 
Ocean Ballroom 
11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. 

When Safety Meets Efficiency: Implementing New Technologies

New technology is often the question, the problem, and the solution depending on perspective. From artificial intelligence and big data, to cloud computing and distributed ledger technology, the FAA and ANSPs around the globe are considering, developing, and implementing new technology applications every day. From a safety perspective, these new technologies can run a fine line between streamlining efficiencies for multiple stakeholders and potentially disrupting operations across the entire airspace. What mechanisms are involved to ensure that the NAS is running optimally, but while maintaining the FAA’s gold safety standard?

Join this first panel in the series on evolving NAS safety for a discussion on how the integration of new technology in the NAS will drive safety challenges that must be mitigated while also creating new opportunities for safety improvements. This panel will explore both the opportunities these technologies present as well as the lessons learned that must be applied to manage uncertainty moving forward.

Moderator: Michael O'Donnell, FAA
Vincent Capezzuto, Aireon
Misty Davies, NASA
Bryan Larish, Verizon
David Rottblatt, EmbraerX
Bridget Singratanakul, NATCA

Superstar Theater
12:45 - 1 p.m.  Closing Remarks  Superstar Theater  
Save the date for next year!
May 12 - 14, 2020

Thank you to our sponsors:

  • Welcome to the ATCA
  • Welcome to the ATCA
  • 06 Jun 2018
    Hon. Linda Hall Daschle Named 2018 Glen A. Gilbert Memorial Award Winner

    The Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA) is pleased to announce that former FAA Acting Administrator Linda Hall Daschle has been selected as the 2018 recipient of the prestigious Glen A. Gilbert Memorial Award, one of the most prominent awards in aviation and ATCA’s highest honor.

    A pioneer for women in air traffic management, Daschle was the first female to hold the post of Acting Administrator for the FAA. She began her aviation career in Kansas nearly 45 years ago as a licensed weather observer for the agency. In 1993, she was nominated by President Clinton and confirmed by the US Senate for the position of FAA Deputy Administrator. One of her first tasks involved an assessment of the agency’s key air traffic modernization program called the Advanced Automation System which was eventually overhauled, saving the agency an estimated $1.6 billion. She also oversaw the advancement of new regional airline safety regulations and conducted a review of the agency’s safety and surveillance program, which resulted in one of the single largest hires of new safety inspectors in FAA history. 

    Ms. Daschle has held numerous government and private-sector leadership positions, including with the American Association of Airport Executives, the Air Transport Association, the former Civil Aeronautics Board, and with the law firm of Baker Donelson. She is currently President of LHD & Associates, Inc, and serves on the board of Aireon, LLC.

    In accepting the Glen A. Gilbert Memorial Award, Ms. Daschle joins aviation greats, including Delta’s Richard Anderson, NATCA President Paul Rinaldi, the Hon. Jane Garvey, Boeing’s Neil Planzer, former Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta, and pilot A. Scott Crossfield. (View press release HERE.)

    Tickets will be available this month. For more information, visit

    Established in Washington, D.C., in 1956 by a group of air traffic controllers, the Air Traffic Control Association has been from the outset dedicated to progress in the science of air traffic control and the preservation of a safe flight environment.
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