The ILA Berlin Air Show saw Rockwell Collins’ latest training systems last week, as the company featured its Common Architecture Avionic System (CAAS) and Cockpit and Joint Secure Air Combat Training System (JSAS).
CAAS reduces crew workload with integrated multiple communications, weapons and mission sensor subsystems and navigation, focussing on increased safety and operational awareness.
JSAS delivers the first certified, four-level Multi Independent Levels of Security (MILS) training equipment for both ground-based and airborne applications.
In addition, Rockwell Collins featured its Flight Mission Computer FMC-4000 radios and TELDIX space wheel.
It has been announced that Pentastar Aviation and Chicago Jet Group have formed a strategic alliance for the provision of CPDLC FANS 1/A STC for Gulfstream business aircraft.
Controller-Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) will give access to designated airspace that will reduce flight time and fuel burn, and has been introduced to enhance efficiency for flight deck communications as air traffic continues to increase year-on-year.
FANS technology delivers flight tracking and text messaging capabilities to flight decks to enable clear and concise aircraft communications across the world.
Providers of CPDLC support aircraft operators as they move towards a single directive for air traffic communications.
CityJet flight AF1558 received an RAF fighter jet escort last week following a failed communications system over the UK.
The Air France aircraft reportedly went off-course during its flight bound for Newcastle, losing part of its communications system over an area of Yorkshire.
The Royal Air Force launched a quick scramble of two Typhoon fighter planes to identify the aircraft that was unresponsive.
Once communications were re-established, the Air France flight landed safely. Although Air France confirmed the incident in a later Tweet, the cause of the radio silence has not yet been confirmed.
A joint venture has been agreed between British satellite company, Inmarsat, and Beijing’s Marine Communications and Navigation (MCN) to develop aircraft communications solutions for the cabin and the flight deck for the Chinese commercial aviation market.
Inmarsat’s latest offering, GX Aviation, will feature highly in the joint venture, providing in-flight connectivity solutions to give global coverage, as will SwiftBroadband-Safety (SB-S).
China’s aircraft passengers will soon be able to enjoy broadband at speeds comparable to the ground-based services, and will be able to use their personal mobile devices.
The agreement is expected to be finalised later this year.
CPDLC (Controller-Pilot Data Link Communications) gives operators enhanced efficiency and the opportunity to reduce operational costs with the ability to receive direct clearance from ATC. This Departure Clearance Functionality was tested this week in Kentucky by Universal Avionics using their Cessna Citation 7.
Increasing efficiency is critical both on the ground and on the flight deck, and minimising flight crew workload, saving time and reducing costs are high priorities on the agenda of many an operator.
The functionality test recorded clearance delivery in just 22 seconds at the FAA tech centre, and Universal Avionics announce their testing as a success.
Providers of CPDLC to supplement voice communications recognise the need for reliability, and prepare to ready the industry for compliance before the end of the decade.
As a part of the NextGen initiative, the text messaging capabilities of aircraft data link – CPLDC (Controller-Pilot Data Link Communications) – are being hailed as the way forward in the bid to eradicate the use of voice communications for the transmission of critical aircraft communications such as weather data, position reporting and other ATC operational messages.
Under the new initiative, pilots will be able to ‘accept’ messaging over text, without the need to make a verbal or data-based response.
The NextGen initiative is designed to improve aircraft communications with the simplification of messaging, avoiding misinterpretation, and standardising messaging protocols on the flight deck.
Arizona-based Associated Air Centre, an aircraft maintenance and modification specialist, has been granted FAA STC for its Boeing VIP business jet, giving the go-ahead for CPDLC installation.
CPDLC is a part of the requirement for FANS compliance, and is being much discussed in the industry in terms of the benefits for flight deck communications around the world, weighed with the additional burden of cost implications.
Regardless, the mandates are forging ahead with plans for completion in 2020 – an extension of the previous 2016 deadline.
Providers of Controller-Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) systems around the globe are hailing CPDLC as the only answer to safety in the skies as burgeoning air traffic numbers continue to rise year-on-year.