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December 1, 2012
Fundamental technology change usually comes about at a very deliberate pace in the aircraft industry. This is especially true when it comes to the databuses that help run critical operations onboard civil and military platforms. Having proven themselves over decades, ARINC 429 and Mil-Std-1553-based technologies still enjoy a great deal of support despite their limitations. However, a transition is...
December 1, 2012
Hurricane, super storm, mega storm, perfect storm, and my favorite, Frankenstorm. All were used to describe the weather event that barreled up the Eastern seaboard of the United States the weekend of Oct. 27, cancelling thousands of flights and closing down some of the nation’s largest airports for days. Hype aside, it was a huge, unprecedented storm that impacted a third of this country and...
December 1, 2012
The RTCA and EUROCAE have released new software certification guidelines that are already having an impact on new designs in the United States and Europe. The venerable DO-178B/ED-12B has been updated and released as a series of seven documents which include the core DO-178C and a set of companion documents DO-330 thru DO-333 covering Tools, Model-based Development, Object Oriented design, and Formal...
December 1, 2012
IMS: In-Flight Ka-Band Connectivity Installations to Hit 6,000 by 2020 A research report predicts Ka-band connectivity for in-flight applications will hit 6,000 by 2020. According to the latest findings from IMS Research, Ku-band will be the most popular technology at the end of 2015; with Ka-band becoming the market leader by 2020. Of the predicted 15,300 connected aircraft at the end of 2021, it is...
December 1, 2012
IFE Monitors Lumexis, based in Irvine, Calif., introduced two high-definition TV displays — a 10.1-inch and a companion 12.1-inch, expanding its lineup which already includes 8.9-inch, 15.4-inch and 23-inch monitors. Deliveries of the 10.1-inch version will begin in the first quarter 2013, to be followed in the second quarter by the new 12.1-inch display, the company said. The new displays feature...
December 1, 2012
Rick Ducharme Metron Aviation, based in Dulles, Va., named Rick Ducharme executive vice president of industry relations. Ducharme joins Metron Aviation from FAA where he was deputy chief operating officer, Air Traffic Organization. He has more than 30 years of aviation experience across the full range of FAA operations including en route, oceanic, terminal and system operations services. During his time at...
December 1, 2012
2013  February 12-14 ATM World Congress, IFEMA, Madrid, Spain. Visit www.worldatmcongress.org. March 4-7 Heli-Expo 2013, Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas. Visit www.heliexpo.com. 12-14 ATC Global, Amsterdam RAI Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Visit www.atcglobalhub.com. 25-28 Aircraft Electronics Association International Convention and Trade Show, MGM Grand Hotel and Convention Center, Las...
December 1, 2012
Over the last few decades the foundation for on-board software, hardware and overall platform and system design assurance slowly but surely has been laid. DO-178B (now C) revolutionized software design assurance, then DO-254 did the same for complex electronic hardware, and finally — two years ago — the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) 4754A added an improved approach for aircraft and...
December 1, 2012
Hold on, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) are coming to civilian airspace near you! Trainers and aviation authorities worldwide are preparing for the forecast boom of civil-use UASs in the next decade. One of the biggest challenges they face in the quest to safely integrate UASs into the airspace is setting training/licensing qualification standards for pilots who “fly” these vehicles from the...
November 1, 2012
Emteq’s HD video cable For wire and cable companies, the aviation industry, even in a time of economic austerity, is a key source of opportunities. Smaller, lighter and more capable cables and wire remain a priority for an industry looking to reduce operating costs and support advanced digital technologies. As they look to boost the capability of new aircraft, operators also need an assist from wire...
November 1, 2012
A B-52H Stratofortress takes off from Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, in 2009. The U.S. Air Force’s aging airplanes need careful tending — especially their airframes and engines. But the avionics systems in this age of mass-market electronics are often a headache as well. Obsolescence is far more common today than in the days of mil-spec. And even the newest upgrades face these issues before...
November 1, 2012
Aviation industry leaders gathered in Atlantic City, N.J., in September for the Second Annual Avionics for NextGen conference, urging cooperation among industry stakeholders and action from regulatory bodies to move the massive airspace modernization initiative forward. Panels discussed the various roadblocks to implementation including the integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) in the National...
November 1, 2012
What started out as military-only network has exploded so that everyone, everywhere is connected via GPS. You can get GPS in your car, on your phone, on the boat, and, yes, even on an airplane. For aircraft operators, the systems are invaluable, providing benefits that allow pilots to safely and efficiently navigate an aircraft to its destination. Additionally, GPS is a cornerstone of FAA’s NextGen...
November 1, 2012
   Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin Lockheed, Air Force Fix C-5M ‘Deficiencies’ The U.S. Air Force’s C-5M program has fixed some of the problems that arose during two major modernization initiatives for the transport aircraft and is working to repair the others, according to the Air Force and prime contractor Lockheed Martin. Lockheed Martin designed and successfully tested...
November 1, 2012
Supply Agreement Mid-Continent Instrument and Avionics, based in Wichita, Kan., signed a distribution and supply agreement with A123 Systems, of Waltham, Mass., by which Mid-Continent will offer A123’s Nanophosphate lithium-ion battery technology for aviation applications. Mid-Continent’s True Blue Power division initially began by offering two inverters and the TS835 Emergency Power Supply...
November 1, 2012
Robert K. Ortberg, Philip J. Jasper Robert K. Ortberg Rockwell Collins appointed Robert K. Ortberg as the company’s president. He joins Clayton M. Jones, who continues as chairman and CEO, in the newly formed Office of the Chief Executive. As president, Ortberg is primarily responsible for the operational management of the company, including oversight of its commercial and government businesses and...
November 1, 2012
2013  February 12-14 ATM World Congress, IFEMA, Madrid, Spain. Visit www.worldatmcongress.org. March 4-7 Heli-Expo 2013, Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas. Visit www.heliexpo.com. 12-14 ATC Global, Amsterdam RAI Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Visit www.atcglobalhub.com. 25-28 Aircraft Electronics Association International Convention and Trade Show, MGM Grand Hotel and Convention Center, Las...
November 1, 2012
This topic has probably ignited more discussion among the air traveling public than lost luggage or the in-flight meal service. In our endlessly connected age, people demand to be spliced into the communication stream 24/7. How dare a flight attendant tell them you cannot use some device at any time they desire? Everybody knows this “problem” is a total farce, and nothing bad will ever happen...
November 1, 2012
UAS in the NAS I had occasion to read Emily Feliz’s Editor’s Note in the September issue. I have no quarrel with what she says; it is just that she did not go far enough to outline the bigger picture. The subject of the Editor’s Note is the huge problem of integrating Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) into the National Airspace System (NAS). The major problem, as I see it, is the failure of...
October 1, 2012
After several years of poor sales, the market for new business aircraft seems to be improving for OEMs and their avionics suppliers. In May, Cessna announced with great fanfare the launch of its new long-range business jet, the Citation Longitude. Six months earlier, the company launched the mid-range Citation Latitude. The Longitude and Latitude will gradually replace the Citation X. The Longitude will...
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