Release #08.041M
August 14, 2008

US Airways Capt. Brian Townsend Receives ALPA’s Presidential Citation Award
Las Vegas, Nev., resident recognized for expanding the use of RNP and RNAV procedures

WASHINGTON—The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), will recognize US Airways Capt. Brian Townsend with a 2007 Presidential Citation Award, the Association’s honor for outstanding work in aviation safety, for his superior leadership of ALPA’s National Airspace System Modernization (NASMOD) Committee. This award will be presented today at ALPA’s 54th Annual Air Safety & Security Forum and Awards Banquet in Washington, D.C.

“Capt. Townsend worked tirelessly to represent pilots’ interests in the national airspace modernization community,” said ALPA President, Capt. John Prater. “From ensuring that the latest technologies get into the cockpit to weighing in on updated procedures, he has made great strides in bringing the airline industry into the 21st century.”

ALPA’s NASMOD Committee works collaboratively with aviation industry and government stakeholders to modernize the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS), so that it can handle the ever-increasing volume of air traffic while improving safety, security, and efficiency.

Capt. Townsend increased ALPA pilots’ use of performance-based navigational procedures, including area navigation (RNAV) and required navigation performance (RNP), which enhance a pilot’s situational awareness, reduce the air traffic controller’s workload, and provide shorter, more efficient routes that, on average, save fuel and reduce flight time.

Much of the work he accomplished on RNAV and RNP took place through the FAA’s Performance-Based Operations Aviation Rulemaking Committee (PARC). The FAA released an updated performance-based navigation brochure this year, listing the airports that currently use either or both of these procedures and basic information about these initiatives.

Capt. Townsend also pushed for the implementation of Automatic Dependent Surveillance—Broadcast (ADS-B), which will replace the current system of navigation and surveillance by 2020. ADS-B, using the aircraft’s onboard navigation systems (usually GPS), automatically broadcasts the aircraft’s position and course once every second without requiring interrogation by a ground-based radar. Like RNAV and RNP, ADS-B will give flight crews a powerful new tool with several applications that will improve safety and efficiency in today’s airline industry.

As the NASMOD Committee Chairman, he effectively directed ALPA’s participation in such diverse areas as the development of Unmanned Aircraft Systems, advanced aircraft navigation and surveillance concepts, development of equipment standards and procedures, and the wide variety of industry activity in support of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen).

Founded in 1931, ALPA represents 55,000 pilots at 40 airlines in the U.S. and Canada. Visit for more information.

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CONTACT: Pete Janhunen, Linda Shotwell, Molly Martin, (703) 481-4440