Singapore-based satellite communications terminal maker Addvalue has a new partnership with Miami-based avionics manufacturer Avionica to start developing a new generation of Swift Broadband aircraft terminals.
Under the partnership, Addvalue will provide satellite connectivity components while Avionica will develop the new system’s avionics and provide system integration and certification. A key component of the partnership is Inmarsat’s Swiftbroadband internet protocol-based network. It will provide the medium through which the new terminal will transmit aircraft data transmissions and voice communications between controllers and pilots.
The terminals are being developed for commercial airliners, Sean Reilly, vice president of development for Avionica, told Avionics International.
“Using SwiftBroadband terminals will enhance safety by incorporating voice and data communications as part of the SwiftBroadBand operations. We’re taking SBB technology, which is already in use today, and adding air traffic control services over the same network. We see this as a way to maximize the value of aircraft data through the combined use of more real-time and reliable data connectivity,” Reilly said.
The new partnership is Avionica’s effort to continuing ascending within the connected aircraft ecosystem of manufacturers, service providers and operators. In May 2018, the company established a new joint venture with GE Aviation. The joint venture pairs Avionica’s mixture of lightweight flight data management avionics with GE’s extensive lineup of digital aircraft analytics platforms.
Reilly said the partnership with Addvalue will enable the delivery of aircraft data over the SwiftBroadband link to products and services that are provided by GE.
“The terminal is designed to be used as part of the current satellite system. It will be fully integrated into the aircraft's voice and data communications. We're strictly using Inmarsat L band,” he said.
Addvalue’s partnership with Avionica will also be its first move to break into the commercial aviation market, as the company’s 15-year history has focused on developing communication terminals for mobile satellite systems within other markets. The company will also provide post-production maintenance support on the new terminals for Avionica’s customers based in the Asia Pacific region.
The two companies expect to bring the new terminals to the market in early 2020.
“The partnership with Avionica signifies a watershed in the history of Addvalue as it extends our business portfolio into the exciting and fast growing aviation market,” Addvalue CEO Colin Chan said of the new partnership.