In a boost for Louisville, Colo.-based AirCell (Booth No. 1630), Gulfstream has selected the company’s Axxess cabin communications system as standard equipment aboard its line of large-cabin business jets spanning the G300 through G550.
European authorities apparently do not share the qualms the Federal Communications Commission and FAA have about the in-flight use of personal cellphones. At the Paris Air Show in June, mobile telephony service provider OnAir announced that the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has certified the airborne GSM equipment that supports OnAir Services for use on the Airbus A318.
The new TopFlight satellite data unit (SDU) from Thales is set to be installed on a new-build business aircraft later this year by an as yet unidentified manufacturer. According to the France-based electronics group, the equipment should be certified to support wireless communications for passengers by the second quarter of next year.
AirCell reports it has successfully completed the initial phase of flight testing for a new airborne telecommunications link, which is claimed to provide average data speeds in flight of 300- to 500 kilobytes per second and peak rates up to 2.4 megabytes per second.
The TopFlight satellite communications terminal that Thales launched at last year’s Farnborough airshow will be installed later this year on new-build corporate aircraft produced by an as-yet unidentified OEM and should be certified to support WiFi-based passenger use by the second quarter of next year.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has decided to keep in place the rule requiring passengers in the U.S. to turn off cellphones before takeoff. But the ruling might not be enough to end the debate thanks to new mobile telephone technology that is designed to circumvent traditional cellular ground networks.
Engineers from Rockwell Collins are immersed in the task of redesigning a satellite direct TV antenna to bring Boeing’s broadband Connexion service to super-midsize and larger business jets. The Cedar Rapids, Iowa avionics manufacturer anticipates initial flight tests of a prototype of the new antenna in the coming months and commercial introduction of Connexion hardware late next year.
As most of its customers know by now, AirCell no longer actively markets airborne cellular systems, mainly because new digital cellular technology is rendering much of its existing analog-based ground network obsolete–but that doesn’t mean the AirCell name is a misnomer.
OnAir, the inflight voice and data communications joint venture among Airbus, SITA and Tenzing, will not pursue business aircraft installations for the time being. The company has said that it will focus exclusively on the airline sector.
Matsushita Avionics Systems might not be a company with which many people are intimately familiar, but chances are most of the business aviation industry will know quite a lot about MAS soon enough. A top supplier of in-flight entertainment systems to the airlines for more than 25 years, the Bothell, Wash.-based cabin avionics supplier this year is making its first serious foray into the business aviation IFE market.