INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE FLIGHT LOCATION & DATA RECOVERY 2017
Hamburg, Germany 9 to 12 May 2017
By Paul Roux
Satellite Authorisation Systems (Pty) Ltd
The recent disappearance of MH370 in March 2014 prompted the identification and documentation of Global Aircraft Tracking Initiatives.
I had the opportunity to attend the flight location and data recovery conference in Germany in May this year. A large contingent of manufactures and OEM’s attended the conference, among them, Boeing, Airbus, Rockwell Collins, Inmarsat , ICAO, BEA, IATA and Thales (to name but a few).
The conference focused mainly on the need for ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) GADSS (Global Aeronautical Distress Safety System) compliance – as far as ADT (Aircraft Distress Tracking) was concerned.
A number of presentations were delivered on the first day, paving the way for open forums and discussions to take place. Of interest were the OEM and leading aviation manufacturers’ presentations and how they are trying to utilize current technologies to stay compliant with the requirements of GADSS and ADT by the ICAO deadlines. (These requirements were voted by the 192 member states, for implementation in new aircraft by Nov 2018 , and retrofitted to current aircraft by Jan 2021.
While all the OEM and manufactures have current systems with normal navigation and current 4D15 requirements (4 dimensions every 15 min ICAO recommendations) none of them could demonstrate a system that would allow the aircrafts continued tracking when power to the flight deck or flight instruments was removed.
This has become the main driver to meeting compliance. The requirements are listed in the EUROCAE ED-237 and speak to the aircraft distress status and what triggers will be used to activate the distress tracking. Most, if not all the players, indicated it would take at least 2 years to meet the requirements of compliance. One of the large manufactures said that the industry would not be ready in time and would like to extend the deadlines (even though they have had 4 years to prepare). The two governing bodies present made very specific reference to the fact that they themselves did not set the recommendations but that the 192 member states voted for them, so this would be near impossible to change.
With all that in mind, SatAuth had the opportunity to briefly demonstrate our system and while not being live at the time, was deemed to be GADSS ATD compliant. The Acting Chief, Operational Safety and Air Navigation Bureau ICAO, Captain Miguel Marin, discussed the multiply dimensions that our system transmits to the ground, and said …
“as far as I can see if the system delivers all these details and is independently powered your system is currently compliant”
SatAuth will be displaying at the International Paris Air Show from the 19 January 2017 to the 25 June 2017 at the Amphenol stand BOOTH E8 HALL 2B.
The SatAuth system is currently being evaluated by SAA on 2 A340 300 aircraft and is expected to form part of SAA planned compliance plan to ICAO.