Avionics News March 2017 - 29
Focus Team. "But that is often not the case with a large number
of aircraft installations being completed now. Many aircraft
leave the shop with some type of unresolved problem."
Marks' small team notifies aircraft owners about the most
serious ADS-B Out avionics issues and works to resolve them.
His team reports that relatively few owners they've contacted
knew their ADS-B avionics had problems.
Most installation issues so far have occurred in the biggest
equipage group: single-engine, fixed-wing general aviation
aircraft used primarily for recreation or training.
About 5,000 of 27,000 completed ADS-B Out installations
have performance problems or transmit incorrect data, the FAA
found. Of those, 4,100 are single-engine general aviation aircraft
including experimental and LSA.
About half of all ADS-B Out-equipped experimental and LSA
have issues with performance or avionics configuration. Many
light aircraft owners have a great deal of technical savvy, but
errors can and do occur with do-it-yourself ADS-B installations.
Aircraft operators must ensure that their ADS-B equipment is
Many experimental and LSA owners are installing ADS-B
Out because they want to fly in rule airspace where ADS-B Out
will be required under the 2020 mandate. By adding the optional
ADS-B In capability, they can receive Traffic Information
Service-Broadcast, which shows air traffic near their aircraft.
ADS-B In equipment also enables them to receive position
reports directly from ADS-B Out aircraft flying nearby. Aircraft
equipped with Universal Access Transceiver operating on 978
MHz also have access to graphical weather displays in the
cockpit as well as text-based advisories, including Notices to
Airmen and significant weather activity provided by the Flight
Information Service-Broadcast. Aircraft equipped with ADS-B
enabled Mode S Transponders operating on 1090 MHz do not
receive FIS-B information, but they do receive TIS-B traffic
Repair shop best practices
Some repair shops perform functional checks on the ground
of newly installed ADS-B avionics using test equipment that can
show if the electronics are properly configured and transmitting
the correct data. This includes the aircraft's FAA-assigned 24-bit
International Civil Aviation Organization address (Mode S
address), emitter category, flight identification code and more.
While ground test equipment can catch many potential issues,
it might not detect transmitting errors that can occur during
flight, which is another good reason to regularly use the FAA's
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