EBACE Convention News

New Gulfstreams Prompt Banyan To Fully Embrace WiFi

 - May 13, 2012, 10:00 AM

Fort Launderdale, Florida FBO Banyan Air Service (Stand 456) has just completed equipping its ramp to meet requirements for the new Gulfstream G650 and G280 corporate jets. These aircraft, set to enter service this year, are equipped with new maintenance systems that depend on wireless connectivity to deliver its messages to mechanics and to facilitate software repair and updates to components.

The G650 contains an aircraft health and trend monitoring system, also known as PlaneConnectHTM (which uses GE Aviation’s integrated vehicle health management system), and the G280 includes a system that allows for wireless database updates to the Rockwell Collins system through the avionics manufacturer’s Ascend portal. Newly established WiFi functionality at Banyan Air Service will enable visiting G650 and G280 aircraft to use their external antennas to transfer data to and from the aircraft.

The company has adopted WiFi across its headquarters site. “We took the opportunity to take our wireless to the next level,” said Joseph Melendez, Banyan’s information technology director. “We equipped 80 acres on our entire campus with wireless connectivity and also revamped our internal wireless to provide a better experience for our customers.” The facility includes the company’s 24/7 FBO services, aircraft sales, maintenance and avionics, a retail aviation products store and the Jet Runway Café.

Banyan’s director of maintenance, Brian Wilson, is anticipating that the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration will soon approve its application for an STC allowing it to fit the Honeywell Aspire 200LG system in the Gulfstream GII, GIII and GIV. The system turns these aircraft into WiFi hotspots and enables pilots and passengers to use WiFi-enabled devices to access email, Internet data and voice communications.

“The complete package consists of the Aspire 200LG broadband system augmented with a dual-channel Iridium satcom,” said Wilson. “Our launch customer is very satisfied with the system and we have already received many inquiries about this innovative product,” he added. The team recently completed enhanced ground proximity warning system and flight data recorder upgrades on two GIVs.