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Information Display System Replacement Program (IDSR)

Tiffany McBride is the Article 114 Representative  

Background: The IDS Replacement program was originally supposed to replace all of the Information Display Systems in the NAS with one product known as NIDS (NAS IDS). The program was later reduced to 41terminal networks comprising 96 facilities and at present time is fully deployed.  

Information Display Systems provide a wide variety of information to Air Traffic Controllers such as current weather, airspace delegation, access to approach plates, NOTAMS, SIGMETS, flight route verification and aircraft information. The most common system in the NAS is a DOS based system known as IDS-4. These systems are based on 1980’s technology and as workstations fail it is increasingly difficult to find replacement parts. IDS-4 sustainably has been estimated to end between 2021 and 2026.  

NIDS is fully deployed at present in 41 networks and is currently categorized as in “sustainment mode”. The program continues to enhance its software and troubleshoot issues but there will no more funded sites in the NAS.  

Upcoming Activities: 

  • SCT’s Auto ASOS facility priority list was created. All facilities will receive the build in January 2021, but each will be turned on in phases after training and information is provided. Auto ASOS fix was built remotely by database team due to inability to get into tech center.  
  • PDX is receiving some incomplete weather during mEARTS reports at remote facilities. The IDSR Team has been in contact with the National Weather Service and P80 to install ‘watch’ software in attempt to locate the issue. A meeting is scheduled for this week and will hopefully provide an update and fix to move forward.  
  • While the FAA moves to rank projects for the phased opening approach at the Technical Center is appears that IDSR/NIDS has been allocated to Phase Three which is not expected to be reached until late 2021. No formal software testing was accomplished in 2020. In response to this delay the FAA IDSR team has merged the build that is ready for testing (3.6.4) with the next builds (3.7 and now 3.8). The time frame should allow all of the building and compiling work to be completed prior to Technical Center access and will also allow the program to procure an official FAA license to a Linux platform. Build 3.8 was created as a dual platform build making the possible move to Linux more manageable. When testing does occur it will be a huge undertaking because the software will have to be tested on a Windows system, a Linux system and a mixed mode (Windows and Linux running together) system.  
  • Ongoing biweekly Status Meetings and Technical Interchange Meetings (TIM) discussing the future merging with and transition to EIDS. 
  • Ongoing SIB meetings discussing AIMS reported issues to categorize and rank issues for inclusion in further software builds.