An article in AIN’s September issue addressed concerns that have been raised about the security of the ADS-B system, which is headed for widespread deployment around the world. ADS-B is designed to replace radar as the primary method for surveillance of airborne traffic.
When Gulfstream’s G650 enters service later this year, pilots will find a pleasant surprise, a Honeywell RDR 4000 3-D weather radar that is far easier to operate than earlier systems. The radar has been flying for a few years on airliners, and the G650 is the first business jet application. New features just implemented on the RDR 4000 include turbulence detection, hail and lightning display and a new attenuation display.
A recent update to the FAA’s aeronautical information manual (AIM) specifically wants to refocus how pilots use their transponders on the ground. For years, most pilots became used to ensuring transponders were turned off until takeoff or as part of the after-landing checks. The AIM now says, “Civil and military transponders should be turned ‘on’ to the normal altitude-reporting position prior to moving on the surface to ensure the aircraft is visible to ATC [ground] surveillance systems.”
HungaroControl’s new 107,000-sq-ft ATC Center in Budapest, funded by the EU and slated to be equipped with certified radar and communications equipment by the end of this year, represents the next step in bringing modern en route ATC to the region. En route ATC operations are scheduled to begin from the new facility in February. HungaroControl employs 156 air traffic controllers.
“The Block Aircraft Registration Request [Barr] program doesn’t really provide privacy; it’s just a barrier,” Dustin Hoffman, president of Los Angeles-based IT engineering firm Exigent Systems, told AIN. Hoffman, who has a private pilot certificate and flies a piston single for his business, set out to prove his point at the Defcon 20 computer security conference last month in Las Vegas.
NBAA and AOPA are using the political conventions in the U.S. this week and next as platforms to highlight the value of general aviation to policymakers and opinion leaders. They are at the Republican National Convention this week in Tampa, Fla., and will be at the Democratic National Convention next week in Charlotte, N.C.
ITT Exelis for the first time exhibited its airborne sense-and-avoid (ABSAA) radar under development for the U.S. Navy’s MQ-4C Triton Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (Bams) unmanned aircraft system. The radar was displayed this week at the Unmanned Systems North America conference in Las Vegas. It is also being promoted for other UASs as a solution to flying in unrestricted airspace, branded as the SkySense 2020H radar system.
The concept isn’t new. In fact, one could call it a logical extension of development work that originated with Saab in Sweden in the mid-2000s, which showed the economic potential of datalinking various sensors at an unmanned airport to controllers at a distant air traffic monitoring and control center. Such a center could handle a number of small airports that had relatively few arrivals and departures but that still needed personnel to maintain a monitoring watch.
Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill got a response from acting FAA Administrator Michael Huerta after she questioned cost overruns on a contract to train air traffic controllers, but it wasn’t the one she wanted.
Garmin unveiled a pair of ADS-B units and a new solid-state weather radar system yesterday, further broadening its avionics product line.
The company’s new GDL 88 is a dual-link ADS-B solution, which transmits and receives on 978 MHz and also receives on 1090 MHz. Its ability to receive on both 978 and 1090 MHz means that it can detect traffic transmitting on either ADS-B OUT frequency and receive subscription-free weather data on 978 MHz. ADS-B OUT capability for flying above 18,000 feet or outside the U.S. could be added with a GTX 330/33 ES transponder.