Aircell unveiled new SwiftBroadband airtime programs for business aviation this week at EBACE. Business aircraft operators can now choose from a variety of SwiftBroadband data and voice plans offered by Aircell with accompanying services. Pay-as-you-go monthly data plans are available. These come with single monthly invoices for all Aircell SwiftBroadband, Iridium and Gogo Biz airtime services. Data compression is included at no additional charge. Heavy users of data are offered special annual plans.
Constant Aviation’s Las Vegas facility has been selected by Embraer as an authorized service center for the Legacy 600/650 and Phenom 100/300. Constant Aviation will support scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, avionics upgrades, structural repairs and interior refurbishments.
Duncan Aviation’s avionics team is validating STCs in response to Aircell’s announcement that Gogo Biz will be available in portions of Canada this year. Duncan has completed 11 STCs to date.
Aircell has expanded its terrestrial air-to-ground network into Canada and now Aircell-equipped aircraft can use the service for Internet access and voice service in Canada, Alaska and the continental U.S. for no additional charge. The new Canadian coverage reaches into the country’s southern territories and along its western borders with Alaska. “The debut of Gogo Biz service in Canada culminates a multi-year development program and we’re pleased to see it go live,” said Aircell executive v-p and general manager John Wade.
Aircell received STC approvals from the EASA for installation of in-flight connectivity and entertainment systems on Bombardier Challenger 300s. Specifically, the certifications cover the Aviator 300 datacom system and UCS 5000 “smart” router and media server. The company said the Aviator 300 STC data package is being offered to Challenger 300 operators for a “nominal fee” when they install the system at an authorized Aircell dealer and activate a new SwiftBroadband service plan. Aircell entered the European market in 2002 and the region is now its second-largest market.
Elliott Aviation has received FAA STC approval for the activation and use of all Aircell Wi-Fi products in the Hawker 800/850/900/1000. The approval includes the newly announced ATG 2000 and ST 4300, as well as the ATG 5000, ATG 4000, Aviator 200/300/350 and Gogo Vision with UCS 5000 media server.
“Cost of the Aircell ATG 2000 for these Hawkers starts at approximately $57,000, not including installation,” said Conrad Theisen, avionics sales manager for Elliott Aviation. Downtime is eight to 10 days.
The Citation CJ3 is the latest member of Cessna’s CJ series to be upgraded with the Garmin G3000 avionics system, following the M2 (née CJ1) and CJ2+. The CJ3+’s new avionics include improved turbulence-detecting weather radar, Tcas II, advanced Taws, a wireless media server, Garmin integrated cockpit and cabin Iridium phone and Aircell high-speed Internet system, as well as ADS-B capabilities. Besides the new glass cockpit, the CJ3+ also has an all-new interior with a redesigned cabin and cockpit and new pressurization and diagnostics systems.
Today Aircell unveiled the ST 4300, a global in-flight communications system for business aircraft that is expected to be eligible for Fans certification. The ST 4300 combines voice, narrowband data and cockpit datalink services into a single unit. Available with one, two or three Iridium voice/narrowband data channels, as well as a dedicated Iridium data channel, the system allows business aircraft operators to configure cabin and flight-deck communications to suit their specific needs and budgets.
More than 2,000 Gogo Biz on-board broadband systems have been installed in business aircraft, Aircell announced today. This milestone was reached 4.5 years after the Gogo Biz service was introduced, which Aircell said makes “it the most rapidly adopted broadband service in business aviation history.” Jet Aviation performed the first Gogo Biz installation in June 2009 for the launch customer, a corporate aircraft operator based in the Midwest U.S. Gogo Biz allows passengers and crews to have Internet access above 10,000 feet in the continental U.S.
A no-reserve auction held on Friday in a warehouse just a mile from Avantair’s former Clearwater (Fla.) Airport headquarters raised a “couple of million” dollars for the estate of the bankrupt fractional aircraft company, according to auctioneer Starman Bros. Auctions. Citing rules under bankruptcy laws, auctioneer president Steve Starman told AIN that he couldn’t provide a more detailed account of the funds raised.