Meeting today in Spain, regulators from the U.S. and the European Union are expected to sign an agreement that would boost cooperation in developing satellite-based air traffic control systems. The goal is to ensure that the U.S. NextGen system is compatible with its European counterpart, Sesar, allowing airlines to operate on either continent with a single avionics upgrade. With billions of dollars already committed to firms on both sides of the Atlantic -- including EADS, Honeywell International Inc., Boeing Co. and Rockwell Collins Inc. -- officials are under pressure to deliver a system that can deliver on promised improvements in flight time, fuel burn and congestion.

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