Integrated Briefing Office Celebrating 25 Years of Operation
22nd of July 2018 marked 25 years of operation for the Integrated Briefing Office (IBOF) of Estonia, on which occasion we will look back to see how IBOF was founded in 1993 and how it progressed thereafter.
Formation of the Intergated Briefing Office in Estonia
Republic of Estonia’s first Intergated Briefing Office was opened within AIS department on 22nd July 1993.
Rein Järv was the first director of CAA (Civil Aviation Administration, founded in 1990), who founded and became the manager of the AIS department. Ms Lembe Vorsman was given an assignment in 1993 to create a Briefing Office in cooperation with Norwegian CAA and it was decided that an Integrated Briefing Office shall be created – one that includes NOF, ARO, BOF and MET briefing. Such integrated briefing was the first one in Europe and the creation fo such unit was possible thanks to the fact that Estonia is a small progressive country and the process was supported by Mr Järv and CAA’s director Mr Sõrmus.
The first AIS specialist training was conducted by the colleagues from Norwegian CAA, the training started on 12th July 1993 and by the opening day of Integrated Briefing Office, international certificates had been issued to the specialists. 9 people worked at the newly opened IBOF. Norwegian colleagues supported Estonian IBOF with everything except the furniture. IBOF’s aeronautical documents cost 13 000 German marks.
In the beginning the Integrated Briefing Office operated on the basement of Tallinn Airport’s terminal building. The first Briefing Office was built within two weeks. In 1996 IBOF moved to the old terminal building of the airport and back to the airport terminal in 2000. In 2008, IBOF moved to the current building of EANS.
In the Swedish Eastgate project Estonian AIS specialists were already providing training to AIS specialists in Mongolia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia between 2002-2003.
At first, Estonia cooperated with Finnish colleagues in the provision of BOF service, ODIN system was used for preparing PIBs (Pre-flight Information Bulletins). In 2000, a THALES system ANAIS was procured, which enabled integrating the main functions of briefing and along with it, Estonian IBOF attained Eurocontrol’s Intergated Briefing Level 5. Today, Comsoft systems Cadas ATS and IMS are in use, which enable integrating and automating even more functions.
Until 2008, the briefing specialists had a direct contact with pilots and their representatives. As of 2008, briefing service is provided by telephone, e-mail and fax. The Self-Briefing facilities in Tallinn and Tartu airport terminals enable the crew members to prepare for the flight and receive consultation from briefing specialists via telephone. A new web application enables the pilots to submit the flight plan application from home, using a tablet or smart phone.
Integrated Briefing Office is a contemporary and continuously evolving AIM unit, which operates in accordance with state and international rules and requirements. In 2018, 21 specialists work in IBOF, 34 specialists in total in the AIM department.