As part of its evaluation of loran as a potential backup to GPS, the FAA has contracted Rock-well Collins to build a combined GPS/loran variant of its standard multimode navigation and landing receiver. The unit’s primary function will be to provide GPS navigation, with automatic switchover to loran should GPS signals be lost or degraded, and automatic reversion to GPS when normal service resumes.
Wide Area Augmentation System
The woes experienced by builders of the wide-area augmentation system (WAAS) are nothing new to those who have followed the development of the satellite-navigation project over the last decade. In fact, it has become almost cliché to use woe and WAAS in the same sentence. So it’s not surprising to learn that a program one senator once referred to as a “$4 billion boondoggle” has lost luster over time.
LAAS could end up being overtaken by a combination of the FAA’s WAAS and Europe’s GPS equivalent, Galileo. While official speakers at last month’s U.S.
For the first couple of months this year, FAA Administrator Marion Blakey has been the most peripatetic agency head in recent years, making extended trips to the Far East and most recently to South America.
Sharp rises in the number of airline flights originating from airports in the U.S. and Europe are presenting FAA and Eurocontrol officials with some daunting challenges. Chief among these is the question of how to squeeze more capacity from airports and ATC route systems that in some places already seem stretched to the breaking point.
The FAA’s decision to relegate the GPS Cat 1 local-area augmentation system (LAAS) to a mere R&D program (AIN, March 2004, page 1) came as little surprise to either administration officials or industry.
In an effort to streamline its GPS/navcom product line, Garmin will rename the CNX80 navigator the GNS 480, according to a spokesman. The new designation positions the panel-mount unit between Garmin’s GNS 430 and GNS 530 products, more than 41,000 of which are flying in various GA aircraft around the world.
It is no secret that the FAA in the last several months has been forced to shelve a number of important ATC modernization projects. But now a blunt assessment by Department of Transportation inspector general Kenneth Mead accuses the agency of misjudging the technological maturity of the canceled programs and failing to gauge their true costs.
Universal Avionics plans to announce FAA certification of the first TSO’d WAAS-qualified FMS for installation on Part 23 and 25 aircraft at a press conference today at
2 p.m. The new Universal W series FMS allows operators to use GPS as a primary means of navigation and to fly WAAS/LPV IFR approaches. The W series FMS is certified to TSO C146b, Class Gamma-3, according to Universal Avionics.
This summer a Eurocopter EC 155 all-weather demonstrator performed satellite-guided precision approach tests in Lausanne, Switzerland, as part of a research program aimed at developing approach and departure IFR procedures suited to helicopters using the European geostationary navigation overlay service (egnos) Skyguide, the Swiss air navigation service provider, coordinated the program.