Jeppesen, Arinc collaborate on flight-plan uplink for bizjets

 - October 4, 2007, 6:40 AM

Jeppesen and Arinc Direct are pooling their resources to give corporate aviation customers the ability to uplink flight plans directly to an airplane’s flight management system. The service, available in the air or on the ground, eliminates the need for pilots to type flight plans into the FMS, cutting workload and reducing the risk of errors. The system uses Arinc’s two-way datalink network, which is capable of sending a message confirming the receipt of the flight plan back to Jeppesen.

Pilots and Jeppesen’s international trip-planning staff can also exchange text messages, aircraft position reports, on/off information and notams. The full lineup of Arinc’s two-way communication services are expected to be available to Jeppesen customers this month.

While the collaboration between Jeppesen and Arinc is a first, executives for both companies said it opens the door for further cooperation in the future. “We look forward to working more closely with Jeppesen in the integration of communication and flight-support services to enhance our offering to business aviation,” said David Poltorak, vice president of Arinc Direct’s business aviation unit.

Arinc Direct is the business aviation services division of Annapolis, Md.-based Arinc. Launched last spring, the unit offers flight-support services for corporate flight departments and FBOs, with a menu of service choices that include worldwide flight planning, weather information, flight following, voice and data communications, ground handling and global concierge services.

Flight-Support Options

A staff in Annapolis handles flight-support requests, using the Internet to communicate with pilots and schedulers. Customers can access flight-planning tools, weather services and ground-handling services, as well as billing and account information, on the Arinc Direct Web site or by calling the Arinc data center. The addition of flight-support options to Arinc Direct’s service mix has helped expand the capabilities of the new division, headed by Poltorak. Flight departments can send text messages to aircraft and pilots can respond in text or by using Arinc Direct’s voice service.

Both data and voice messages are transmitted over the Arinc network, used in more than 2,000 business jets. Available ATC messaging includes pre-departure clearances, digital ATIS, North Atlantic oceanic clearances and terminal weather information.