Avionics News February 2016 - 26
As time to adapt shrinks, options continue to grow
S T O R Y
D A V E
H I G D O N
heck your calendar; if it reads February 2016, fewer than 47 months remain before Jan. 1, 2020. From that date on, the Federal Aviation Administration maintains, access to U.S. airspace that today requires a working altitude-reporting
Mode C or Mode S transponder will begin to also require aircraft to equip with and
use Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast Out.
Part of the NextGen transition, the switch gives FAA controllers faster, more-precise reporting information using data generated on and by aircraft avionics.
It's already been nearly six years since the FAA published its final rule in May
2010 - after a lengthy period between testing the technology in Alaska and the region
around Louisville, Kentucky, then writing and publishing the notice of proposed rulemaking, a lengthy comment period, a detailed review of comments, and the final rule.
The rule's Jan. 1, 2020, compliance date allowed the aviation community nine years
and seven months to comply. But initially, few options existed to satisfy the mandate.
At that point in development, much of the fleet lacked an approved solution; the
avionics industry started off modestly in its offerings. To say adapting was slow out
of the starting gate is akin to saying the tortoise needed a head start on the rabbit. But
like the tortoise, the range of options slowly, steadily gained ground.
With each passing month, fewer aircraft exist without at least one technology solution to add ADS-B Out.