Federal officials, as well as Maine state police officers, are still trying to locate the person or people using a portable transceiver to jam the Unicom frequency at Central Maine Airport of Norridgewock (KOWK), 27 miles north of Augusta. The interference began about two weeks ago. Federal officials believe someone is deliberately holding down the transmit key on the portable transceiver, effectively blocking radio communications for nearby aircraft.
The prospect of an ATC facility without human air traffic controllers is progressing well, according to Dr. Dave Byers, a pioneer in the technology that would enable this development.
A total rewrite of Federal Communications Commission Part 87 has been proposed. Part 87 covers frequency allocations and the certification of aircraft radio equipment, unicom and other ground stations. The FCC said the proposal is designed to update requirements to reflect the latest technological advances, as well as to eliminate duplication and outmoded and other unnecessary regulations. Comments are due March 14.
While automated weather observing systems (AWOS) have been a fixture at airports for many years, what some feel is the next generation of the technology has been gaining in popularity. The SuperAWOS, devised by Maryland airport owner David Wartofsky, has had a long and twisting road to certification.