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The new technology is vital to help alleviate congestion and reduce flight delays and would be safer and help streamline flight operations so as to cut down on jet noise.

The FAA expects the number of flights to double in the next decade.

The bill also calls for easing decades-old restrictions on long-haul flights at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Western senators from both parties long have pushed to have restrictions on nonstop flights between the airport and their home states loosened, saying the rules — instituted years ago to spur travel at the newer Washington Dulles International Airport — are outdated and inconvenient.