A One/Two Punch: The 2 Hottest Topics for LABACE 2017

LABACE 2017 Aerial View

There’s a lot going on in the business aviation industry and LABACE is a great place to learn about the newest innovations in the market. While sales of new and used aircraft remains sluggish, the service side of business aviation continues to be quite strong with innovative technologies continuing to transform the market.

Some topics remain at the forefront of what’s happening (yes, yes connectivity). We are also seeing how new mandates are generating a lot of interest-and questions.

With that, I wanted to share what we see as the two biggest topics at LABACE 2017.

1) Connectivity is king. Study after study shows that travelers are demanding the always – available internet experience they enjoy at home be available in the sky too. And even though inflight Wi-Fi hasn’t been available for very long, the demand for the service is high so much so that many passengers say they are willing to choose an alternative to their preferred airline just to access in flight internet.

The good news is that there are many new connectivity options available that can satisfy not only the demand for access, but also access to high-quality service. From Inmarsat’s Jet ConneX to ViaSat’s mobile broadband via the Ku-band network to Iridium’s NEXT and others, reliable, high speed connectivity is here. The question now becomes – what’s the best choice and how can I work with a service provider to implement it in a cost-effective manner?

2) Mandates are driving ADS-B Out, FANS equipage. Regulatory agencies across the globe, including in the U.S. and Europe, are requiring the use of ADS-B Out in aircraft that are operating in controlled airspace by 2020. And that’s good, because ADS-B Out technology provides some significant benefits: it allows an aircraft to continuously broadcast its GPS position, heading, velocity and other surveillance information to Air Traffic Control (ATC). But, the new mandates are driving business aircraft operators worldwide to get equipped so that they can continue to access increasingly modernized airspace and creating an urgent need to plan for completing ADS-B Out installations by the end of 2019.

In addition to ADS-B Out, the FANS 1/A North Atlantic mandate will reach a significant milestone at the end of 2017, requiring all aircraft operating in the North Atlantic Region between Flight Levels 350 and 390 to be equipped with a FANS controller pilot data link communication (CPDLC) and automatic dependent surveillance-contract (ADS-C) technologies. In 2020, the North Atlantic FANS mandate will expand to include all traffic at Flight Level 290, and above, throughout the North Atlantic Region. The trend that “prime” airspace is being reserved for those operators that are well equipped is not being lost on the industry as more operators seek to understand, implement and get trained on these new technologies.

These are some of what we see as hot topics for LABACE 2017, but we’d love to hear what you think. Comment below or if you’re attending LABACE 2017, please visit us at stand #2016. Our team will be on hand, waiting to talk with you.

Read more about author Ben Gambrell.

Alphabet soup for pilots: FANS 1/A+ CPDLC and ADS-C

There’s a lot of talk lately about FANS 1/A+ CPDLC and ADS-C, but what does it really mean to operators? What is truly the value?

FANS 1/A, or Future Air Navigation Systems, is the suite of avionics upgrades that implement Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Contract (ADS-C) and Controller Pilot Data Link Communication (CPDLC).  When position reporting is established, ADS-C provides position, altitude, speed, intent and meteorological data direction to ATC with no crew intervention.  CPDLC is a data application that enables text-based message transmissions between the air traffic controller and the flight crew.

So, why use data link messaging instead of voice transmissions?

First, it reduces the chances of human error. Secondly, it increases the efficiency and volume of pilot requests that can be handled by ATC. As ATC moves towards best equipped, best served operation, FANS 1/A+ provides even more benefits for operators and pilots.  Top five benefits of FANS 1/A and CPDLC include:

  • Allows pilots to fly more optimal flight levels, consuming less fuel.
  • Allows ATC to reduce minimum separation requirements between aircraft
  • Minimizes language barrier issues and other communication errors through the use of a standard message set.
  • Reduces pilot  and air traffic controller workloads through the use of automated position reporting.
  • Replaces verbel air traffic control instructions and crew requests over radio frequencies, reducing frequency congestion.

Today, we offer upgrades to FANS 1/A+ for some Rockwell Collins-equipped aircraft types. After your aircraft is equipped to utilize FANS 1/A+, our ARINCDirect team can test your system and provide the required training for operation. We also offer FANS testing for all ARINCDirect customers for new FANS installations, refresher training for flight crews and troubleshooting assistance for any FANS issues that may be encountered.  In addition to our manual FANS testing stations, we also have automated FANS test stations which are available 24/7 from anywhere in the world.  

For more information regarding FANS testing or to schedule a testing session, please email ADFANS@arinc.com or call +1 410-266-2990.

Read more about author Erin Santiago.