ARINC was awarded the contract to provide Eurocontrol with a test system to validate the functioning of VDL Mode 2 (VDL2) avionics in a multi-frequency environment.
ARINC’s validation system will be installed in a new laboratory at the Eurocontrol Experimental Centre (EEC) in Bretigny, France, the same location where ARINC installed a VDL2 testbed in 2004 for Eurocontrol under the Link2000 Program.
ARINC said the validation of avionics will be a critical step for the European air transport community, which faces a DataLink Services Implementing Rule to implement Controller-Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC), based on VDL Mode 2 avionics, for Air Traffic Control communications.
“This is an important new agreement for both ARINC and Eurocontrol,” said Andy Hubbard, ARINC EMEA Managing Director. “It extends a successful 10-year strategic partnership that underpinned the rollout of VDL Mode 2 in the Maastricht FIR under the Link2000 Program. And it retains the 10-year knowledge base acquired by both parties to accelerate the progress of CPDLC moving forward.”
Europe’s Maastricht Upper Air Center and airlines have been using VDL Mode 2 communications since 2004 under the EC Link2000 Program. But with anticipated growth of air traffic going forward, multiple VDL2 frequencies will soon be needed to support the required capacity. All VDL2 systems will need to operate reliably in a multi-frequency environment by changing channels as required to maximize performance and avoid frequency congestion. Testing of this functionality has not been done before.