European Regional Airlines Form New Avionics Equipage Policy

Airbus A320 cockpit. Photo: Airbus.

Airbus A320 cockpit. Photo: Airbus.

European regional airlines have new guidance for equipping airframes with hardware, software, wiring and other components necessary to get aircraft into compliance with future airspace mandates.

According to the European Regional Airlines Assn.'s (ERA) newly published avionics equipage guidance, there are four main airspace mandates for which operators in Europe need to prepare. These include automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast out (ADS-B Out), very high frequency datalink and aircraft tracking.

While guidance was provided for operators needing to comply with the ADS-B Out mandate, ERA’s latest position is that such aircraft will not be ready in time for the deadline. ERA’s latest policy view on the ADS-B Out mandate, for example, is that the agency believes compliance is not achievable for European regional operators.

“The mandate for retrofit compliance is currently under review as the installation of ADS-B transponders to meet the Enhanced Surveillance Requirement of (EU) 1028/2014 is not achievable,” said ERA in an April 2017 policy update on ADS-B.

The association is participating on the European Aviation Safety Agency’s (EASA) surveillance, performance and interoperability rulemaking group, recently meeting in Germany to draft the notice of proposed amendment, implementing regulation and regulatory impact assessment for a revised SPI regulation, which also sets a framework for implementation of the ADS-B ground infrastructure.

The working group will provide an opinion to the European Commission by the end of June and expects adoption of a its proposed amendments to the mandate by 2018.

ERA also provided guidance on the European Commission’s rules for flight recorders, which were adopted in December 2015. These rules concern aircraft tracking systems, underwater locating devices and flight recorders. Airbus and Boeing, whose aircraft will see the most impact from the European Commission recorder rules and the International Civil Aviation Org.’s Global Aeronautical Distress Safety System initiative, recently gave presentations on their perspectives on this topic at the 2017 AEEC/AMC conference.

Check out the entire ERA avionics equipage guidance document here.

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