The FAA chose FreeFlight Systems to provide ADS-B avionics upgrades for up to 600 aircraft that helped the agency with development of ADS-B as part of the Capstone Program in Alaska and several other states in the U.S. The contract is worth up to $7,017,094. FreeFlight will be installing the Rangr FDL-978-XVR in partnership with an avionics shop in Alaska. The Capstone participants had installed first-generation ADS-B equipment, funded by the FAA in exchange for pilot feedback.
The FAA has approved funding to continue the automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) network rollout through 2020, the year that aircraft will be required to have ADS-B Out capability to broadcast their GPS-derived position to controllers on the ground.
Operators in the U.S. are required to equip their aircraft for automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) “Out” capability by 2020.
The high-level industry and government committee tasked by the FAA with developing “a common understanding” of NextGen priorities has recommended a set of baseline airborne equipment and next will advise on operational or financial incentives that would help aircraft operators install that equipment.
The road to ADS-B may well be paved with good intentions, but for operators of smaller aircraft there could be some serious financial potholes ahead.
Ten years ago, in 2000, a slide presentation at a Washington aviation conference illustrated 12 distinct benefits of ADS-B: the “backbone of NextGen,” as it was later to be called by the FAA. But the presenter wasn’t an FAA official. It was UPS 747 Capt. Karen Lee, and her presentation followed industry ADS-B briefings given over the previous two years by the then UPS director of flight operations Capt.
For many, multilateration (sometimes abbreviated Mlat) is one of those vague ATC terms that is always hard to define. Put simply, it is how a spread-out group of small, unmanned, ground-based “listening posts” continuously monitors aircraft transponder signals, and then collectively triangulates them to derive individual aircraft positions. Following that, they send those positions plus their idents, altitudes and other data to ATC.
On March 10 next year the FAA is expected to issue its final rule covering mandatory equipage of ADS-B avionics, and agency officials are tight lipped about what, if any, changes will be made to the original draft rule offered for industry comment early last year.
At a recent NextGen conference, Jim Linney of the FAA’s ADS-B office detailed the user community’s response to the invitation to comment on the agency’s notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). Of the 1,372 responses to the document’s 85 separate issues, there were 101 positive comments, versus 1,271 negative–or “non-positive,” in FAA terminology–comments.
It’s a David-and-Goliath story, but lately it has been getting tougher to tell just who’s the Goliath.
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