Lingering uncertainty about whether cellphone calls placed by airline passengers would cause interference with the cell system on the ground has prompted the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to drop a longstanding proposal to relax the current ban.
The aviation industry speaks with its own jargon and acronym-filled language, one that can take years to master. To help with that challenge, Aviation Supplies and Academics has released the fourth edition of its Dictionary of Aeronautical Terms.
The times, they are a changing. Years ago, during the heyday of new product introductions within a few years of each other and a plethora of international aerospace manufacturers, airshow exhibitors tripped over each other trying to outdo the competition.
The slightly worn helicopter searchlight at the Vectorbeam Technologies booth (No. 4101) illustrates not wear and tear from normal operations but the punishment that the unit went through during RTCA DO-160E testing, including lightning tests.
Last week’s stock market tumble put a chokehold on Inmarsat’s Swift64 satellite ISDN service as business jet passengers, particularly those on the U.S. East Coast, scrambled for their laptops and, perhaps predictably, brought the network to a grinding halt. As demand for the service continues to skyrocket, Swift64 is having trouble handling data traffic in the U.S. and Europe at peak times, especially on weekday afternoons.
Sky Way Communications has obtained special temporary authorization from the FCC to begin testing planned upgrades for services based on the AT&T/Claircom air-to-ground network, decommissioned in 2002 in a cost-cutting move by AT&T Wireless.
Choosing the right data satcom system has never been easier thanks to an array of choices from manufacturers. Several suppliers are now offering high-speed data satcom equipment that uses the Inmarsat Swift64 satellite link, a digital network operating over the same satellites that carry voice and low-speed data signals.
Customer knowledge today about office-in-the-sky communications technology seems to be similar to the level of understanding of personal computers 10 to 15 years ago. Buyers then knew they needed a PC of some sort but many remained unclear about exactly what kind of computer they needed.
Cessna Aircraft has selected the AirCell Axxess satcom system as a factory option on the Citation X, Sovereign and XLS. Axxess, introduced at the NBAA Convention last month, is a multi-channel, wireless broadband-ready satcom system designed for midsize to large business jets. The standard Axxess system includes two Iridium satellite communications channels for voice and narrowband data services. Two more channels are available as an option.
Exhibitors at next year’s 45th Farnborough airshow (July 17 to 23) will benefit from a freezing of 2004’s general costs. And companies displaying aircraft in the static park will enjoy a 50-percent rate cut as part of the organizer’s wider moves to make the airshow better value for exhibitors.