EADS and DRS Technologies have agreed to collaborate on production and marketing of the Hellas laser-based obstacle warning system in the U.S. Hellas is said to offer “unprecedented protection” for helicopters against difficult-to-detect obstacles such as power lines.
The FAA has approved Rannoch as a class-1 provider of ASDI (aircraft situational display to industry) data, adding the company to the list of services that offer online subscribers access to real-time flight information. Rannoch said it will use the flight-tracking data as part of its AirScene suite of services. Currently about 20 companies are FAA-approved as class-1 ASDI data providers.
A special military facility dedicated to testing the vulnerability of GPS installations to deliberate jamming is now open to corporate pilots whose operations take them into, over or even near troubled parts of the world where jamming is becoming increasingly common.
The FAA has withdrawn a decade-old proposal to rescind its requirement for mode-S transponders and, consequently, plans to end the hundreds of mode-S installation exemptions currently in effect for Part 121 and 135 operators.
There is no question that ATC radar is expensive. Indeed, many smaller airports can’t afford to pay a radar-qualified controller, let alone buy the hardware. But help may be at hand. With many years’ experience in the avionics field, particularly in the development of DME equipment, London-based electronics company Kinetic Avionic Products has devised a “virtual radar” that is small, lightweight and inexpensive.
The FAA also awarded Raytheon Aircraft Services the agency’s highest award for maintenance excellence. In addition to the service centers’ recognition, 278 employees each earned the recognition of an FAA award.
The bull is back, or at least it appears to be. After watching business aviation limp along for the past three years, executives at Textron, General Dynamics and Raytheon are now optimistic that the industry is on the rebound.
As an added revenue source, Stevens Aviation in Greenville, S.C., plans to officially launch its Heritage Program at the NBAA Convention this fall.
The program, said Randy Znamenak, v-p of sales and marketing, will target “undervalued corporate jets and turboprop aircraft” to be purchased and upgraded by Stevens for resale. “We’re currently looking at some Cessna and Raytheon products that have great upside potential.
A fix has been ordered to resolve the five-second trap of certain Honeywell mode-S transponders. The affected units erroneously go into standby mode if the crew takes longer than five seconds to change codes when using the rotary knob of the radio management unit. Effective October 17, an AD requires insertion of a warning into the AFM and modifications to the transponder. In some cases, replacement of the transponders is mandated.
PrivateSky Aviation Services of Fort Myers, Fla., and Spectralux of Redmond, Wash., have STC’d a mode-S enhanced surveillance upgrade for Gulfstreams. Cost is less than $20,000, depending on the aircraft’s current transponder configuration. Starting next March 30, mode-S elementary and enhanced surveillance systems are scheduled for mandatory phasing in in European airspace.