Pilots who have grown accustomed to flying with up-to-the- minute weather graphics and information broadcast to the cockpit through the XM or Sirius satellite radio services are probably aware that the companies successfully completed their “merger of equals” last year. The deal created a combined entity called Sirius XM Radio Inc.
The Sirius/XM merger will have no impact to WxWorx services, the XM WX Satellite Weather provider said yesterday. WxWorx (Booth No. 962) offers the XM WX service in conjunction with XM Satellite Radio, now called Sirius XM. The two satellite radio companies merged in July.
As anyone who has it or has tried it can attest, satellite radio is seriously cool. Now, just like the thousands of listeners who tune in to satellite radio in their cars or at home, pilots and passengers can receive the 100-plus channels of digital music, news and talk provided by Sirius, one of two U.S. satellite radio providers.
Digital audio specialist Heads Up Technologies of Carrollton, Texas, plans to begin flight testing in the next two months of its satellite digital audio radio (SDAR) for use with XM Satellite Radio’s recently launched commercial service, which will make 100 channels of satellite-transmitted audio available to aircraft passengers over the continental U.S.
Cabin management system specialist Baker Electronics made its presence known at NBAA yesterday with the announcement of a “new digital solution which will ease installation, simplify engineering and provide maximum bandwidth for expansion.”
Hoping to duplicate the success of in-flight datalink weather services that have exploded in the U.S., Avidyne (Booth No. 563) is introducing an Iridium-based satellite data transceiver that will deliver weather graphics and text to pilots flying in Europe.
A new cockpit weather service from XM Radio that is about to make its debut aboard business jets deserves a closer look by aircraft operators who are interested in providing XM digital satellite radio programming in the cabin.
XM Satellite Radio and Weather Works, an affiliate of Baron Services, have joined forces to provide Nexrad weather maps, Metars, TAFs and other data through XM’s proprietary satellite system, which also beams 100 channels of digital audio to special receivers, mainly in cars.
Southern California-based Avionics Innovations plans to introduce a Sirius Satellite Radio receiver system for aircraft, similar to the product it is designing for rival service provider XM Satellite Radio. The Sirius-based AI-SSR receiver unit will include seek tuning and preset memory and access to 100 channels of digital music, news and entertainment programming.
Following in the steps of XM Satellite Radio, rival Sirius plans to offer a competing “always-on” weather service for aircraft through an agreement with data provider WSI. Plans are in place to launch a Sirius line of WSI’s InFlight avionics, which the companies say will be compatible with the current list of approved InFlight multifunction displays.