The pressure is on for Exton, Pa.-based Innovative Solutions & Support (IS&S), but you would never know it from talking with company marketing executives.
Air traffic control
While most speakers discussed current training issues and new learning concepts at the Air Traffic Control Association’s recent “ATC Training for the Future” conference, one presenter proposed that tomorrow’s air traffic controllers should possess, at minimum, a bachelor of science degree with emphasis on mathematics, computer science, engineering, probability theory and interpersonal psychology from an accredited university.
The number of aircraft flying in Europe with controller-pilot datalink communications (CPDLC) equipment has about doubled in the past few months from 152 airplanes to more than 300, according to Eurocontrol officials. By contrast, CPDLC in the U.S. seems stuck in neutral, despite strong demand for the technology among airlines.
Rockwell Collins has obtained what is said to be the first FAA TSO approval for ADS-B (automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast) functionality for use with mode-S transponders. The approval will allow for enhanced traffic situational awareness on the airport surface and during flight, as well as for visual see-and-avoid maneuvering, sequencing and merging, crossing and passing operations and oceanic in-trail procedures, Collins said.
Now that much of the world has applied reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) standards in the upper flight levels, it was only a matter of time before forward-thinking China followed suit.
In the aftermath of 9/11, the number-one priority quickly became answering “How did it happen?” and “How do we stop it from happening again?”
Four years later, we know how it happened, leaving the matter of how to stop it from happening again, and raising a third question: “How safe are we?”
King Schools introduced an online course that the San Diego company said meets FAR Part 61.31 requirements for pilots to receive high-altitude training for flying above 25,000 feet. The approximately two-hour course costs $249 and includes a training certificate for the FAA and a cockpit reference code with oxygen requirements and tips on radar use at high altitude.
Effective September 1, operators are required to use a new set of flight plan aircraft equipment suffixes to indicate advanced navigation capabilities. Pilots must use J, K, L or a newly defined Q to specify advanced Rnav and RVSM capabilities. They should continue to use a W to indicate RVSM capability only. The revised list also contains significant changes to the definitions of E and F.
The FAA is more than two years behind schedule for commissioning equipment designed to improve runway surveillance to reduce incursions. Congress wants to know why and what can be done about it and asked the DOT Inspector General to launch an audit into the matter. While the FAA has procured 36 out of 38 Airport Surface Detection Equipment-Model X (ASDE-X) systems, it has commissioned only three for operational use.
A supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking modifies previously proposed (Nov. 23, 2003) changes to the Minneapolis Class B airspace. This action proposes to add a new Area F to contain large turbine-powered aircraft within Class B airspace during operations on new Runway 17/35 at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Runway 17/35, which is 8,000 feet long, is scheduled to become operational on October 27.