UPS MD-11 pilots and controllers at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey started communicating by text messages in May under the Federal Aviation Administration’s data communications (data comm) departure clearance (DCL) trials program. The FAA expects United Airlines, British Airways and other carriers will begin participating this summer.
Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System
Arinc Direct (Booth 1200) is showcasing the preproduction version of Xplore, a communications service that offers, on an iPad, Acars messaging, voice and a messaging platform for SMS and instant messaging and BlackBerry email services. The new product is “in the final stages of testing before certification and full production,” according to Arinc Direct, which is taking pre-orders at the EBACE show.
As Arinc Direct approaches its tenth anniversary next month, success in the Asian market has been such that the data and communications specialist has appointed a full-time Asia Pacific division director: Monte Bolt, who is based in Singapore. Bolt heads a team supporting an Asian customer base that has surpassed 200 aircraft.
Universal Avionics has completed helicopter vibration testing and approval for its UniLink UL-800/801 communications management unit (CMU), expanding the company’s line of products designed for the helicopter market. The UniLink UL-800/801 is an ACARS-compatible CMU that includes digital ATIS, pre-departure clearance, aircraft tracking, messaging, weather information and graphics. The system is also provisioned for the Aeronautical Telecommunications Network, providing a platform for future compliance with emerging datalink requirements.
Arinc Direct, which provides flight-planning services online, continues to develop functionality for both its PC-based and newer iPad-based service. Company director James Hardie told AIN last month that the service offering has been enhanced, with synchronization of data between two iPads in the cockpit now possible using Bluetooth, plus real-time Cloud synchronization of data.
As Europe begins the phased introduction of new datalink standards for aircraft and ATC (above FL285), Arinc Direct continues to play a leading role in future datalink standards (effectively the next-generation Acars).
So-called controller pilot datalink communications (CPDLC) requires aircraft to be able to communicate with ATC using VHF datalink (VDL) Mode 2, akin to text messaging of requests and clearances (although voice communications will still be used as a back-up).
Universal Avionics announced at Heli-Expo ‘13 the recent completion of helicopter vibration testing and approval for its airborne datalink system, the UniLink UL-800/801 communications management unit (CMU), expanding the company’s line of products designed for the helicopter market. Attendees can view and operate the unit at the company’s exhibit (Booth No. C2401).
Arinc Direct has brought a range of its products to the MEBA show, underlining its position as a leading flight services solutions provider for business aviation. The company (here at Stand 387) is showcasing its Connect Communication System, a new development that provides three-in-one capability in a single portable device.
At the NBAA Convention, Arinc Direct unveiled its new ADConnect app for Apple and Android devices, further demonstrating the flexibility and capability of modern smartphones. ADConnect allows passengers to use their smartphones instead of onboard handsets to make satcom calls, all without installing additional equipment. ADConnect costs $9.99 at the Apple App Store or Google Play (Android).
ArincDirect is now certified to assist business aviation flight departments in need of help gaining FAA/CAA letters of authorization approval for both the hardware installation and crew training required to fly using pilot controller data link communications (CPDLC).