For most flight department managers, the thought of navigating the maze of FAA rules to fly required navigation performance (RNP) approach procedures is enough to stop them dead in their tracks.
Wide Area Augmentation System
Columbus, Ohio-based fractional provider NetJets Aviation last month forged an agreement with the FAA to become the agency’s latest NextGen partner. Under the agreement, NetJets will focus on NextGen initiatives such as area navigation (Rnav) and required navigation performance (RNP) approaches on routes into Teterboro (N.J.) Airport; WAAS, which allows for precision instrument approaches; and data communications.
Columbus, Ohio-based fractional provider NetJets Aviation on Friday forged an agreement with the FAA to become the agency’s latest NextGen partner. According to an FAA spokesman, details of the agreement–including length of the partnership–are still being worked out.
What’s up with WAAS? That’s the question countless business jet pilots have been asking since the FAA announced plans to publish thousands of WAAS LPV (lateral precision with vertical guidance) approaches at U.S. airports while simultaneously making it difficult–or in some cases impossible–for operators to gain approval to fly the procedures.
Global Aviation recently installed dual Universal Avionics UNS-1Ew WAAS/SBAS-FMSs in an Astra light jet. This is the first certification approval for the WAAS/SBAS-FMS in an Astra and adds yet another platform for Universal’s WAAS/SBAS-enabled FMSs. The UNS-1Ew installation was approved for 3D-coupled WAAS GPS approaches, including localizer performance with vertical guidance (LPV) procedures.
The number of GPS-based wide-area augmentation system (WAAS) instrument approach procedures in the U.S. has surpassed the number of ILS approaches in the country, according to the FAA. “This is clearly a turning point for aviation and the way pilots navigate,” the agency noted in a statement announcing the milestone.
NOAA’s National Geodetic Survey last month said it incorporated 43 new GPS tracking sites into the continuously operating reference station (CORS) network, including 13 sites established by the FAA as part of its wide area augmentation system (WAAS). Four of the new WAAS sites are located in Alaska, four in Canada and five in Mexico. The network now consists of more than 1,200 sites worldwide.
Innovative Solutions & Support has successfully flown autopilot-coupled lateral precision with vertical guidance (LPV) approaches in the company Pilatus PC-12 and it expects FAA certification in about 60 to 90 days.
Sandel Avionics is adding new WAAS approach annunciations to its 4-ATI electronic primary navigation display, the SN4500, with a software update available next month. The Vista, Calif. manufacturer of plug-and-play EFIS replacements for legacy electromechanical attitude-director and horizontal situation indicators said the SN4500 will then annunciate the type of WAAS approach that is armed.
Honeywell announced flight management system software upgrades for its FMZ-2000 and Primus Epic systems that will provide advanced GPS-enabled route and approach capabilities, including access to congested airspace and oceanic airways. The Version 6.1 FMS software upgrade will apply to aircraft with the FMZ-2000, while Version 7.1 enhances the Primus Epic suite.