DLR grants license for AI-based speech understanding to technology company EML

May 29, 2024
German Aerospace Center (DLR) is researching AI-based systems for the automatic recognition and understanding of spoken language in air traffic control.

COLOGNE, Germany - Can safety-sensitive areas such as air traffic control work with automated speech recognition? The German Aerospace Center (DLR) has been researching and developing AI-based systems for automatic speech recognition and speech understanding for demanding and safety-critical aviation radio communications for years. Heidelberg-based EML Speech Technology GmbH is now taking over the DLR technology under license. EML wants to offer this technology, combined with the specially developed speech understanding, in the field of air traffic control, DLR reports. Continue reading original article.

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

29 May 2024 - "Our speech understanding system can reduce the workload of air traffic controllers," says Prof. Hartmut Helmke, a leading DLR scientist in the field of speech understanding in air traffic control. "In times of a shortage of skilled workers and increasing traffic demand, the relief provided by speech understanding can make an important contribution to more efficient flight control and more environmentally friendly air traffic."

In recent years, air traffic controllers at the DLR Institute of Flight Guidance have extensively tested this technology across various work areas. Through numerous simulation studies using both laboratory and real data, researchers demonstrated that the systems could decrease the number of manual inputs required by air traffic controllers by 30 times. This improvement is relevant for different air traffic control environments, including en route flights, arrival and departure control, and airport taxiing traffic management. The reduced need for manual inputs lowered the workload and enhanced situational awareness. The Institute of Flight Guidance confirmed that this reduction in workload enables more efficient traffic management and can lead to fuel savings of up to 60 liters of kerosene per approach near airports.

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Jamie Whitney, Senior Editor
Military + Aerospace Electronics

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