The 2015 general session featuring the joint meetings of the Airlines Executive Engineering Committee and Avionics Maintenance Conference (AEEC | AMC) began Monday, April 27, with an opening session and several symposiums focusing on different aspects of aircraft connectivity and the ongoing NextGen and Single European Sky (SES) airspace modernization projects. Both of these themes are also featured heavily throughout the various symposiums, presentations and sessions scheduled throughout the 66th annual AEEC | AMC 2015 meetings.

Airspace Modernization

According to Nichols, the total aircraft registered within the United States that are now equipped with Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) has reached 10,949. The total number of aircraft now equipped with ADS-B In has reached 1,441. The FAA manager also noted that several airlines are either in the process of equipping their aircraft with ADS-B or have plans to begin equipage. Among the airlines, mentioned, Nichols said the former US Airways, which has recently been absorbed by American Airlines, will be completing their ADS-B Out and In equipage by October 2015. JetBlue has installed ADS-B Out on 35 of its Airbus A320s so far, and United Airlines has indicated that their ADS-B retrofit program will begin in January 2016.
Marouan Chida, Communications, Navigation, Surveillance (CNS) and avionics expert at the SES ATM Research Joint Undertaking (SESAR JU), gave a presentation providing the latest updates with the rollout of the SES initiative. According to Chida, SES is continuing to make progress toward implementing trajectory-based operations with its research and development around Initial 4D (i4D). Last year, the AEEC adopted Supplement 4 to ARINC 702A, which introduces accurate winds and temperature data definitions to enable the implementation of 4-D trajectory within the Flight Management System (FMS). This standard will be applicable to the flight testing and researching of FMS technology being used to conduct i4D flight trials going forward.


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