The prolonged search for the Boeing 777-200 operated as Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 brought attention to onboard data transmission systems that report an aircraft’s position and other information in real time. Such a system could help track an aircraft that disappears from radar coverage.
The FAA issued an airworthiness directive–2013-18-09–on September 18 affecting some Honeywell ASCa emergency locator transmitters (ELTs) installed on transport-category aircraft.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said on Friday it plans to order inspections of the wiring associated with the emergency locator transmitters (ELTs) on Boeing 787s following a recommendation from the UK’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch that operators disable the airplanes’ Honeywell-made systems. An Advisory Directive scheduled for publication today would require inspection for proper wire routing and damaged or pinched wires, the statement said. Operators would also need to inspect the transmitter’s battery compartment for condensation or overheating.
The July 12 fire aboard an Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 787 at London Heathrow Airport (ELHR) has prompted the UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) to recommend operators turn off Honeywell’s Rescu 406 AFN emergency locator transmitters (ELTs) aboard the Dreamliner until appropriate airworthiness actions can be completed.
The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch recommended Thursday that operators of Boeing 787s disable the airplanes’ Honeywell-made emergency locator transmitter following last Friday’s fire aboard a parked Ethiopian Airlines Dreamliner at London Heathrow Airport.
AOPA “vigorously opposes” the U.S. Federal Communication Commission’s plan to prohibit the future use of emergency locator transmitters (ELTs) that use a 121.5-MHz signal. The proposal will have a negative effect on aviation safety, according to AOPA, and the association told the FCC it should immediately abandon its proposed rule changes and defer to the FAA on matters of aviation safety. According to AOPA, there are more than 200,000 general aviation aircraft still carrying 121.5-MHz ELTs.
The U.S. Federal Communications Commission issued a new Notice of Proposed Rulemaking addressing the manufacture, sale and use of emergency locator transmitters that broadcast solely on 121.5 MHz. Comments on the NPRM are due 30 days from publication in the Federal Register, according to the National Air Transportation Association. Publication is expected next week.
ACR Electronics CEO Michael Wilkerson believes the best way to keep more boaters, aviators and outdoor enthusiasts safe is to educate them about the value of keeping a 406 MHz emergency beacon close at hand when it’s needed. Because stories about rescue efforts carry considerable weight, ACR Electronics announced its new Survivor Club–www.survivorclub.com–where people who have used an emergency beacon can share their rescue stories on the SurvivorClub.com forum.
Cobham has completed the sale of its U.S.-based rescue beacon business to J.F. Lehman & Co. for $73 million. The UK company also said it has divested its related European operation to management for a nominal sum.
The businesses–ACR Electronics and ACR Electronics Europe–design and manufacture beacons and emergency locator transmitters, with operations in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Vienna, Austria, respectively.
Becker Avionics has announced its new airborne BD46 beacon decoder, which it describes as “the most modern, lightweight, competitively priced 406 MHz beacon decoder on the market.”
According to the German manufacturer, the BD406 provides a unique tool for search and rescue (SAR) organizations on land, on water or in the air. It is a fixed installation or portable receiver developed specifically to decode and navigate to 406 MHz Cospas-Sarsat capable beacons (PLBs, SPLBs ELTs or EPIRBs) transmitting the 406 MHz signal with GPS information.
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