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The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

That Hard-To-Find Aircraft Part Is Never Further Away Than Your Phone

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Jul 18, 2018 @ 09:15 AM

The aviation world is a pretty big place. Sometimes locating the aircraft part you need is like trying to find the proverbial needle in the haystack, especially if it’s from a World War II fighter jet.

But the fact is, more often than not, Duncan Aviation’s massive inventory of parts, rotables, and exchanges for aircraft has exactly what you are looking for.

Viewing_CaneDarrold Comber suspected his search would not be an easy one. His needle? A joystick from a Grumman F6F Hellcat Fighter with working buttons. After an online search showed Duncan Aviation listing the part in stock, he picked up the phone and called Lance Tophoj, Duncan Aviation Parts & Rotables Sales Rep.

With several joysticks available, Darrold asked Lance if he would personally pick out the nicest one with working buttons, because he had something special in mind for his father-in-law’s 90th birthday.

Summit Lippincott, Darrold’s father-in-law, has been an aviation enthusiast for most of his life. To him the Hellcat joystick holds significant meaning because his older brother, Benjamin, a World War II Navy Grumman F6F Hellcat fighter pilot, tragically died during a training exercise in 1945 while assigned to the Naval Air Station at Boca Chica, Florida.

Because of his profound respect and admiration for his older brother’s courage and service to the United States, his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren have consistently heard his memories and stories about growing up with his brother.

Dogtags_upclose-blogIn honor of Summit’s milestone birthday and in memory of Benjamin, Darrold, created a one-of-a-kind handmade cane that featured a Grumman F6F Hellcat joystick as its handle. Two custom-stamped dog tags were added as the finishing touch.

The team members with Duncan Aviation Parts & Rotables Sales never shy away from a challenge. With access to more than $500 million in parts inventory and worldwide industry contacts, they operate on the premise of “If we don’t have it, we’ll find it!”

The reason we are able to offer this level of service is because of the extensive network of aviation industry contacts we’ve built through the years and the fact that we are available on our customers’ schedules, 24/7/365. Our inventory is competitively priced and checked against the industry marketplace regularly. All this, on top of our multiple OEM relationships and multitude of service agreements, is how our wide base of capabilities keeps customers flying.

Our large and constantly growing rotable and exchange pool is never further than your telephone. And with a primary inventory of more than 485,000 line items, we’ll usually be able to handle your parts needs from stock. We like to say, we specialize in needles.

www.DuncanAviation.aero/parts/search

Tags: Aircraft Parts

Taking To The Skies for RVSM

Posted by Zack Beyers on Tue, Jul 10, 2018 @ 11:00 AM

When he’s not working as an inspector for the parts manufacturing and fabrication departments, Duncan Aviation’s Randy Dill takes to the skies. 

He has been part of an FAA mandated program called Reduced Vertical Separation Monitoring since 2003. “RVSM”, as it is known, is a process defined as the reduction of vertical space between aircraft from 2,000 to 1,000 feet at flight levels from 29,000 feet up to 41,000 feet. RVSM was implemented as a means to increase airspace capacity and fuel efficient flights.
RVSM Mt. McKinley

Randy embarks on flights around the United States, relaying height monitoring data to the FAA and providing certification to the autopilot systems of different aircraft. Anything that flies between 29,000 and 41,000 feet has to have their auto pilot re-certified every 2 years or 1,000 hours, whichever comes first.

“I’ve completed around 715 flights all around the country since I started,” Randy said. “Most of the time I’ll get a call from someone working at a Duncan Aviation satellite avionics shop, saying they need a customer’s aircraft to go through the process, so I’ll head up to wherever and figure things out with that customer.” This year Randy has already made stops in Denver, D.C., Nashville, and several other cities.

E2GMU

CSSI is the company who supplies Randy with the technology to conduct these in-flight operations. The equipment and program is run by the FAA. A GPS monitoring unit (E2 GMU) is what Randy uses during flights. He puts antennas on the windows and floors of the plane in- flight and tracks the auto pilot at altitude for half an hour. The floor antenna tracks the jet’s transponder. The data from the machine is sent by Dill to CSSI and FAA. The flight is tracked from several centers, while monitoring the altitude and atmospheric conditions.

An iPad is built into the monitoring unit to display the data, including satellite positioning, air speed, and altitude. Randy doesn’t have a problem fitting it in the overhead compartment, but has to have it inspected each time he goes through security.

Bozeman“In all the years I’ve been doing this, only 3 flights have failed,” Randy said. “A Learjet 55 had a hard drive crash and the other two had computer issues with data, so we’ve been pretty accurate and fortunate to have those results.”

Aside from his duties with Duncan Aviation, Randy is an instrument rated pilot along with having a unique and exciting job on Nebraska Cornhusker game days, working as a spotter for the public address announcer at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Tags: RVSM

Cabin Experience: Unlike Any Other

Posted by Zack Beyers on Thu, Jun 21, 2018 @ 11:20 AM

For nearly 30 years, Duncan Aviation has led the industry with custom completions solutions for a large variety of business jet cabins. Our designers are experienced in creating stunning aircraft interiors that meet the needs of aircraft operators as well as the restrictions that are often placed on such small spaces. Beautiful designs are combined with expert production, innovation, and quality. The result is a cabin experience unlike any other.

34421601_10155630400641527_3704471161803898880_o

The modern aircraft cabin requires a combination of quality material with the latest technology and in-flight entertainment. When planning for your cabin experience, it’s important to keep in-mind things such as configuration, management systems, seat design, lighting, interior soft goods, connectivity, and so much more.

Aircraft cabins designed and customized by Duncan Aviation include a wide variety of features and benefits.

  • Wireless Bluetooth allows you to make the most of devices brought on-board.
  • LED lighting provides the most versatile aircraft lighting options.
  • Connectivity solutions provide Internet, VPN, and streaming access.
  • In the service galleys, ovens, microwaves, wine coolers, and coffee makers all combine into the beautiful design and functionality found in the cabin.
  • Aircraft noise is lessened by new technologies and insulation sound proofing packages.
  • Purposefully designed seating allows for better ergonomics
  • And gorgeous cabinetry provides elegance and functionality.

Your aircraft cabin should make you feel at home. Comfort, productivity, and identity are all key components of the perfect cabin experience. With Duncan Aviation, that dream can be realized.

Cabin Experience Brochure

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Tags: Interior Refurbishment, In-Flight Internet, Product Information, Duncan Aviation - Lincoln

Women In Aviation: A Career For The Taking

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Wed, Jun 13, 2018 @ 08:28 AM

"To get more women in the field (aviation)is to be the woman in that field. Be brave. You can do it. Others will come join you.” Karen Iten, Engineering Designer

Many women work daily in technical roles at Duncan Aviation. These women are airframe mechanics; avionics and engine technicians; interior and paint specialists; design, electrical, computer, and structural engineers; and flight line reps. Even though aviation is traditionally a male-dominated field, there are plenty of career options available for women with rapid growth and excellent salary potential.

Read on about four of these women–an airframe shift supervisor, landing gear master technician, avionics crew leader, and an engineering designer–who have decided to take the road less traveled and make their way and careers in aviation at Duncan Aviation.

Do What You Love

Jayme-Park_IMG_9616blogAt the age of seven, Jayme Park had her first experience floating in a hot air balloon. But it wasn’t until the young impressionable age of 12, when she rode in a D23 biplane at an airshow, that she knew she wanted a career in aviation. “I was hooked.”

She pursued that dream and for the last 21 years, Jayme has been working for Duncan Aviation in Battle Creek, Michigan. She is the shift supervisor leading teams of airframe, engine, fuel, interior, and accessories technicians. She has enjoyed her tenure and feels very fortunate for her career at Duncan Aviation. “I am lucky. I get to do what I love, for a company that values me for my skills and leadership abilities.”

Be Confident In What You Know

1Q2A0646blogSarah White has had two aviation careers. The first, courtesy of the United States Air Force, took her around the world working on hydraulics, flight controls, wheels, inflight refueling, and weapons systems aboard Boeing B-52s, F-4 Phantom II fighters, and KC-135 Stratotankers.

After retirement from the military, her second aviation career began when she saw an advertisement for a hydraulics technician in Lincoln, Nebraska, while reading her newspaper and drinking her morning coffee. Twenty-three years later, Sarah is the senior member of the team and a master technician overhauling landing gear for business aircraft such as Challengers. 

Being the only woman on a team of men is not without its conflicts, but Sarah says for the most part it has been a positive experience. “Bias happens, but not as often as you would think.” Her advice to anyone doing what she does is to be confident in what you know and then put your head down and do the work. She says it’s customers who are sometimes caught short when she is called in for a consultation. “But as soon as I begin talking intelligently about the squawk and what I am going to do about it, we move past it quickly.” She says it is important to be able to take pressure and criticism on the job, no matter who you are.

Encourage And Support Others

1Q2A1948blogAfter five years in the U.S. Navy and with an advanced electronics and avionics degree from Colorado Aero Tech, Kelly Allman found her way to Duncan Aviation in 1999 and onto the hangar floor as an avionics installation technician. Her first assistant manager was another woman, who from the very beginning expected the best from Kelly. “She always expected the most out of me and held me and the rest of the team to a very high standard.” Kelly is very appreciative of her expectations, advice, and encouragement because “I wouldn’t be where I am now without it.”

Today, Kelly is a crew leader of a team of nine avionics installation technicians. She expects the best from them. “When you’re touching these aircraft, you have to bring your best. You are touching lives. It doesn’t matter if you’re male or female.”

Just Do It

_96A2653-8x10blogAs the only engineer at Duncan Aviation’s Provo, Utah, location, Karen Itin is kept busy creating schematic drawings for interior structures supporting aircraft cabinets, seats, and antennas. It is this behind-the-scenes aspect of her work that she likes most about her job.

When she first started, technicians would come off the floor looking for the design engineer, and it was obvious they were looking for a man. “You can’t take it personally. Instead, you use it as an opportunity to communicate and show them what you can do.”

Her advice to young women thinking about exploring a career in a field that has been traditionally dominated by men is to “Just do it!” The only limitations are the ones you place on yourself. To get more women in the field is to be the woman in that field. Be brave. You can do it. Others will come join you.”


Spring 2018 Duncan Debrief

You can read more about this and other articles in the 2018 Spring Duncan Debrief. 

Download Your Copy Now

Tags: Careers & Recruiting

3D Drawings Help Client Envision Finished Aircraft

Posted by Kate Dolan on Tue, Jun 05, 2018 @ 10:03 AM

“Once he saw the 3D renderings with the materials selected, he signed the contract, and we got to work.” Rachael Weverka, Duncan Aviation Lead Designer

Duncan Aviation Lead Designer Rachael Weverka recently worked with a customer who wanted extensive renovations on his G-V (Gulfstream V). He was a designer’s dream in that he was easygoing, knew what he wanted, and was open to her ideas. But before he would sign a contract, he wanted to see how the colors, patterns, and materials all came together.

Rachael worked with Dan Ryba, one of Duncan Aviation’s Multimedia Illustrators, who produced 3D renderings of what an aircraft would look like with the proposed design.

“I’d met with our customer at his hangar, and he was anxious to get started on the project because he had an upcoming flight overseas and needed the renovations completed prior to that trip,” says Rachael. “Once he saw Dan’s 3D renderings with the materials selected, he signed the contract, and we got to work.”

Completions and Modifications Sales Representative Joep Cuppens also worked on the project, which included complete custom-designed exterior paint.

“We can’t all envision what a finished project is going to look like, and the 3D renderings really take away the guess work,” says Joep. “Several of my customers have asked for them, and they’re delighted by what they see. Even better, they’re especially pleased that the finished product looks like the 3D renderings.”

BeforeduringAfter

Photos: Left-before interior refurbishment; Middle-3D rendering; Right-after interior refurbishment

Carpet conundrum

The time frame for the workscope was a bit tight, and Rachael immediately ran into a potential delay.

“The owner liked the concept of his existing carpet but wanted to change it slightly for an updated look,” says Rachael. “Unfortunately, the existing carpet required all hand-stitching, which adds quite a bit of time to the manufacturing process. We knew that wasn’t an option, so I redesigned it to be mostly machine-made with some custom overtufting for the pattern.”

After discussing the predicament with the carpet manufacturer, Rachael was told if she created the computer templates for the repeating patterns that she had designed, they could make the carpet according to her specifications. She created the templates and sent them to the manufacturer. Using those templates, the machine that stitched the carpet incorporated Rachael’s patterns, and the manufacturer was able to make and deliver the carpet on time, keeping the project on its tight schedule.

It’s all in the details

In addition to paint, the exterior renovations included new steps, which were a unique design with their polished aluminum panels for the risers and black step tread. The mirrored finish is quite striking, and the customer loved them!

Rachael’s designs made big changes to the interior of the aircraft, right down to the smallest detail. For instance, the faucet was a standard faucet that needed to be updated to match the new interior. Rachael had a faucet in mind; it was one she’d used on another G-V.

“This new faucet is a lot like the one that’s commonly used on many aircraft but is constructed to be more durable,” says Rachael.

The new black Corian countertops served as perfect complements to the veneer with its dark grain, and the eye-popping cream accents kept the cabin from appearing too dark. The black pinstriped divan brought in some masculinity, and the soft, cashmere-covered pillows at every seat provided warmth and contrast.

For extra comfort during overnight flights in and out of the United States, Rachael found a company that makes custom linens, pillows, and foam beds that are contoured to each seat.

“The big challenge for this project was the time frame; we wanted to meet the original delivery date so the customer could use this aircraft for an overseas flight,” says Rachael. “With the quick decisions by the owner, and the incredible efforts of all of the team members who worked on this aircraft, we were able to deliver on time. The owner ended up not being able to go on his overseas trip, but the aircraft was ready if he needed it. Instead, he ended up taking delivery in time to make multiple flights to evacuate his family ahead of Hurricane Irma.”


Spring 2018 Duncan Debrief

You can read more about this and other articles in the 2018 Spring Duncan Debrief. 

Download Your Copy Now

Tags: Interior Refurbishment

Duncan Aviation is Proud of its Active and Veteran Military Team Members

Posted by Lori Johnson on Thu, May 24, 2018 @ 08:23 AM

More than 500 of Duncan Aviation’s 2,150 current team members are actively in the military or are military veterans. That’s roughly 24% of the Duncan Aviation workforce.

“Members of the US military are dedicated individuals who bring a unique set of experience and skills to the Duncan Aviation team,” says Jennifer Monroe, Duncan Aviation’s Senior Talent Acquisition Specialist. “Many career skills, both hands-on and soft skills, gained during active duty, transition effortlessly to a position with Duncan Aviation.

“Duncan Aviation actively recruits veterans because their exceptional experience aligns well with our high-quality reputation and core values,” Jennifer continues. “We work very closely with military organizations to transition people from military to civilian careers. We provide transition advice to potential team members and their families in the hopes of providing an easy way to take their military skillset and help them apply it to another career.”

Duncan Aviation partners with a variety of military organizations throughout the county to connect with individuals who are transitioning out of full-time service.  

Entering civilian employment is a major life adjustment, but there are many aspects of Duncan Aviation that veteran team members say remain the same: attention to detail, focus on getting the job done right, and the support from fellow employees.

Keith-Schell-in-uniformKeith Schell

“Duncan Aviation team members helped me considerably move from a government business to private industry,” says Keith Schell, Duncan Aviation’s Manager of Parts & Rotables Sales, Avionics and Accessories and a former Brigadier General with the Nebraska Air National Guard. “There are similarities between the military and Duncan Aviation, like leadership skills, hard workers, high ethics, etc. But there are tremendous differences, too, such as for-profit management and different employee regulations. Everyone has and continues to help me make the transition after nearly 36 years in military employment, and I couldn’t be more appreciative.”

Duncan Aviation Challenger Airframe Tech Matt McGinn, a former E-5 Aviation Structural Mechanic for the US Navy, agrees that the transition from working in the military to working at Duncan Aviation was easier than anticipated. “The Navy and Duncan Aviation have many similarities, from maintenance documentation to safety policies and many other aspects. With my five years of Navy experience working on MH-60S Seahawk helicopters aboard the USS Nimitz, I was able to test for my A&P upon separation with the Navy and Duncan Aviation sent me to Nashville to obtain my A&P certificated with Bakers School of Aeronautics. I am very grateful for that.”

Jennifer says, “Our veterans have been and will continue to be a huge part of our company, and many team members continue to serve in the Reserves or the National Guard during their careers at Duncan Aviation.”

Duncan Aviation is a proud support of the Guard and National Reserve (ESGR). As an employer, Duncan Aviation provides managers and supervisors with the tools needed to effectively manage employees who actively serve in the Guard and Reserve. We also pledge our support to hire veterans returning from service to our country as part of the Utah Patriot Partnership Program and as a Michigan Veteran Friendly Employer.

“Service to our country is something that is important to all of us,” Jennifer says.   

Tags: Announcements, Careers & Recruiting

A Look at the 2018 Pre-Owned Aircraft Market

Posted by Tim Barber on Tue, May 22, 2018 @ 01:00 AM

Everyone is talking about the pre-owned market being stronger at the start of 2018 than it was last year. However, I’m going to venture a guess that most of us have heard this story a good number of times year after year. In fact, the number of green shoots stories that were published throughout the period of the Global Financial Crisis really did wear thin with most of us in the sector. What actually happened was that we all started to ignore the spin and looked at such media with some considerable cynicism.

So, what’s different this year?

ac-sales3The start of 2018 was a real whirlwind with a significant increase in deals, reducing inventory, and just about every broker attending Corporate Jet Investor London at the end of January was talking of a real market shift. At long last we were starting to see that buyers had choices. So did sellers. There was even bullish talk of it being a buyer’s market. In reality, then, as it is now, there are sectors of the market that are performing extremely well while a few are still lagging behind.

According to AMSTAT, sales in January increased by more than 12% followed by sales reductions in February and March, bringing the end of the first quarter of 2018 to a disappointing 5% reduction in retail transactions. However, there’s a buzz in the market more so than we have seen in recent years.

A few sectors really have come alive and whilst overall inventory for sale is now around 9.5%, there are many aircraft where the percentage is just 2% or 3%. Unfortunately, the overall market is hugely skewed by far too many older aircraft remaining for sale for far too long. The reality is that many will never sell and serve no real purpose other than to unfairly inflate the for-sale statistics.

Looking at this in greater detail according to the latest AMSTAT data, 27% of the aircraft for sale are more than 30 years old. This statistic rises to 46% when considering those over 20 years. Just 21% are 10 years old or less. If we remove the aircraft that are probably never going to sell, the market statistics look a lot better. For now we are stuck with the skewed history. Even so, there’s a clear trend of reducing inventory over recent years and more importantly over recent months, as well as plateauing values so there are real signs of improvements.

Tim-Barber--300x300At Duncan Aviation we have had a promising start to the year and have seen a good number of sales and acquisitions complete during the first quarter. As a result of this, we are busy looking for new opportunities to sell aircraft. If you feel that Duncan Aviation can assist you in the sale or purchase of an aircraft for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Please phone me at +44 7836 352 676 or email at Tim.Barber@DuncanAviation.com. You may also reach out to me via my LinkedIn or Twitter (@Tim_Bizav) accounts.

If you are going to EBACE, please stop by our booth – #E89 – to find out more.

Oh, and the hot sectors I mentioned earlier? I’m afraid you’ll have to speak to us to find that out!


EBACE 2018  Duncan Aviation Attendees & Show Announcementsshow announcements.

 

Tags: International Considerations, Aircraft Sales, Conventions & Exhibitions

Comparing Aircraft Maintenance Quotes: Avoiding Sticker Shock

Posted by Diane Heiserman on Thu, May 17, 2018 @ 07:00 AM

When it comes to comparing aircraft maintenance quotes, you should be more concerned about what is not listed than what is.

DSC_3544_blogWhen comparing maintenance quotes from different MRO (maintenance, repair, and overhaul) facilities, there are a staggering number of variables to consider. It is always unwise to assume the final number on each proposal represents the same level of detail. You should always be asking, ‘What does the quote include?’

To help make this process easier, we have compiled a list of questions and discussion points to help you get the details behind the numbers. This is not an all-inclusive list, but it is a great place to begin.

Here are some things to begin the proposal conversation with your sales rep.

Airframe

  • Is the interior R&R included? This is often required to gain access below the cabin floor.
  • What about paint touch-up? And if so, is touch-up completed by spray or brush?
  • Are there state taxes on parts and labor? Consumables and freight charges? Are they included?
  • Are support services like NDT, machining services, hydrostatic testing, included?
  • Is tool rental included or an additional charge?

Avionics

  • Are engineering fees included?
  • Are any additional mods required to complete the workscope, like relocating antennae?
  • Does the proposal include just the baseline package or does it outline optional features of the system being installed?
  • Is the MRO including other recommended options based on feedback from other operators who have installed the system?

Paint

DUNCAN-AV-BCMI-0756CBlogThe number of variables that impact a quote for paint and interior completions work is nearly inexhaustible.

  • In addition to the base paint quote, does the proposal include painting the entry air stair?
  • Does that include replacing the step tread or masking around it?
  • How many stripes and stripe colors are included?
  • Are metallic stripes an up-charge?
  • Is there design support if the paint scheme is changing?
  • What are the options if you request a custom or second base color, wing color, tail color, or logo?
  • Is painting of the wheels and landing gear included?
  • What is the warranty?

Interior

Aircraft interiors is an area where it can be difficult to gauge the extra effort and care that might go into the project but that isn’t clearly represented by a number. Clarify if your interior proposal includes:

  • Is the foam replaced during the seat upholstery or just the dress covers?
  • What type of material is being quoted for upholstery of the divan, leather or fabric?
  • Is rewebbing of the seatbelts included in the upholstery of the seats and divan?
  • If it is a partial interior, and the leather color is changing, are all the leather items quoted for recovery (curtains, entry door shrouds, lavatory seat, etc.)?
  • Is the carpet being replaced hand-made or machine-made? Is the carpet pad being replaced and if so, is the new pad being installed equivalent to the existing pad or does it provide additional thermal or acoustical qualities?

Engine

5E7A9921-2_-blogAlways provide your logbooks up front. Doing so will get you an accurate quote on Service Bulletins, life-limited component replacements, and required Airworthiness Directives.

For non-program engines determine what level of service is being quoting. If only quoted the lowest minimums available for the engine, you can bet you will end up paying more in the end. Always ask the MRO to be up front about the expected expenses and the parts and other components that typically need replacement.

In addition to the base engine overhaul price, ask if the quote includes:

  • Service Bulletin status
  • Life-limited component replacement
  • Airworthiness Directives
  • Shipping charges
  • Discrepancies

Landing Gear

1Q2A0646_blogLanding gear quotes can be offered in a variety of pricing structures. NTE (Not To Exceed) is the most popular and the structure used most often at Duncan Aviation. With NTE, you are provided with the maximum quote and an assurance your final bill will not exceed that quote. Often, the final bill is under the NTE price.

Other options are Firm Fixed and Standard. With Firm Fixed, you are provided with the final bill before your gear arrives. It comes with a no bill-back guarantee, regardless of the condition of the gear. Standard Pricing includes all labor required to perform the normal inspection or overhaul and required parts. Any discrepancies found during the inspection that require additional parts and labor will be quoted over and above.

Whichever pricing structure you select, pay close attention to the exclusions on the contract. They can add extensive additional costs not included in the quote. These include additional customer requests, optional Service Bulletins, missing or abused parts, replacement of life-limited parts, and engineering fees, if required.

When reviewing your landing gear proposal, ask the following:

  • Does it include shipping costs for outsourced components?
  • Are parts or other special programs included in the pricing?
  • What are the contract exclusions?
  • What parts are considered over and above?
  • Are discrepancy and repair costs included in the labor flat rate?

You Play A Part

Evaluating the many quotes an operator receives in the course of preparing for an aircraft service event can be an overwhelming experience.

Ultimately, the success and satisfaction of a maintenance event is a team effort. You are as much a part of the team and its success as we are.

Bottom line…call and allow us the opportunity to walk you through the quote so you can better understand the proposal details as well as the ultimate workscope.

Tags: Avionics Installation, Engine Maintenance, Airframe Maintenance, Interior Refurbishment, Maintenance Event Planning, Landing Gear, Aircraft Paint

Confirm ADS-B Compliance: FAA Has Issued Hundreds Of NPE Letters

Posted by Kate Dolan on Wed, May 09, 2018 @ 04:30 PM

If you upgraded early for ADS-B between 2012 and 2014, your equipment is not compliant with the January 1, 2020, mandate deadline.

adsb1Duncan Aviation has spent the last 5 years educating our customers about the FAA’s upcoming mandate deadline for ADS-B Out (Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast Out). We’ve also performed hundreds of upgrades at our full-service facilities in Battle Creek, Michigan; Lincoln, Nebraska; and Provo, Utah. Duncan Aviation’s network of Satellite Avionics Shops have performed more than 500 installations and even have a dedicated reservation program to make it easier for our customers to get their aircraft into compliance before the deadline at 12:01 am on January 1, 2020.

Recently, several of our customers who upgraded early for ADS-B to the DO-260A standard (to meet compliance in Australia, the Hudson Bay, and the Gulf of Mexico) have received letters from the FAA, alerting them to the fact that they are not in compliance with the ADS-B mandate.

The letters state that the aircraft is equipped with an NPE (Nonperforming Emitter), and that means the system in the cockpit is not transmitting data in compliance with the mandate’s standard. This may have been caused by installation errors, flight crew errors, or hardware that doesn’t meet the performance standards. If the older transponder in your aircraft was simply swapped out, chances are your aircraft is not compliant.

The standard adopted by the FAA in 2010 and the rest of the world’s civil aviation authorities is DO-260B, and it requires the following equipment:

  • 1090-MHz Mode S Extended squitter transponder capable of transmitting data from the cockpit without prompting from the pilot or ATC (Air Traffic Control)
  • GPS/WAAS (Wide-Area Augmentation System) position source (normal GPS does not meet the standard)
  • ADS-B system fault annunciator
  • A path to certification

The mandate requires the entire upgrade unless you plan to fly below 10,000 feet and avoid Class A, B, and C airspace.

Problems With Earlier Standards

Duncan Aviation experts have spoken with several operators who believe that their aircraft is ADS-B compliant. Upon receiving the FAA’s letter, however, it became apparent that they were not, and they sought advice from some of the managers at the Duncan Aviation Satellite Avionics shops.

“If an operator upgraded their equipment from 2012 through 2014, the standard for ADS-B at that time was DO-260A,” explains Matt Nelson, Duncan Aviation’s Satellite Operations Manager. “Since that time, the FAA and Civil Aviation authorities around the world agreed on the DO-260B standard for transponders. That means equipment manufactured and installed before that agreement is not compliant with the January 1, 2020, mandate deadline and the older transponders do not use the predictive forecasting or annunciators that are required by the DO-260B standard.”

For more information, contact Matt Nelson. 

These transponders can be upgraded and brought into compliance by Duncan Aviation or the OEM by installing a WAAS position source, fault annunciation system, and wiring interface—as previously mentioned.

How to Check Your Compliance
If your aircraft has been upgraded for ADS-B, the FAA advises you check to make sure it is working properly. You can do this with the FAA’s Public ADS-B PAPR (Performance Report) tool, inputting information about your aircraft, including tail number, ADS-B equipment, make/model , and flight date.

The FAA then sends the PAPR to the user’s provided email address, usually within 30 minutes. The PAPR can detect operational deficiencies with your ADS-B transmitter as well as verify if your system’s call sign is matched properly with the aircraft. The FAA cautions that operations close to ground level or near the fringes of ADS-B coverage might not yield accurate results.

You can find this tool at the following link:

https://adsbperformance.faa.gov/PAPRRequest.aspx

When to Check Compliance
FAA-Approved-1“When we upgrade your aircraft for ADS-B, our techs perform the ground testing required by AC 20-165b to verify the ADS-B integrity before the aircraft flies,” says Manager of Satellite Operations Matt Nelson.

James Kenney, an aviation safety inspector with the FAA, suggests operators run a PAPR report after conducting a few flights in rule airspace after an ADS-B installation.

“This will let the operator know if everything is functioning properly,” Kenney says.

He also suggests that a new report be run after a few flights in rule airspace if maintenance or repair work is conducted on the aircraft’s avionics systems.

Peace of Mind

We are 20 months from the ADS-B Out mandate deadline. To provide peace of mind for your flight operations, be sure to schedule your ADS-B installation now . . . and remember to verify your compliance with the FAA.

For more information, contact Matt Nelson.

 

Tags: Avionics Installation, ADS-B

ADS-B And Non-Performing Emitters

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Tue, May 01, 2018 @ 07:00 AM

According to the most recent data from the FAA (Federal Aviation Association), slightly fewer than 10% of all U.S. registered ADS-B (Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast)-equipped aircraft are NPE, or non-performing emitters. Having NPE means the aircraft’s ADS-B Out system is not transmitting in compliance with FAR (Federal Aviation Regulations) 91.227.

Here are some common issues that result in having NPE:

  1. Incorrect software version or improper system configuration can result in reduced aircraft position integrity/accuracy.
  2. Incorrect emitter category results when the aircraft’s ADS-B system is transmitting the wrong emitter category based on its maximum take-off weight.
  3. Incorrect Flight ID is a result of the aircraft registration for Mode S not matching the Flight ID.
  4. Transmitting airborne data while the aircraft is on the ground.

Is Your ADS-B Equipment Compliant?  

adsb videoGo to FAA Website: https://adsbperformance.faa.gov/PAPRRequest.aspx and request a PAPR (Public ADS-B Performance Report). A PAPR provides an additional method of verifying proper operation of ADS-B equipment.

After answering a few questions about your ADS-B installation, you will receive a report from the FAA showing what parameters have failed, if any. Instructions and a User’s Guide can be found on the website.

If you have not complied with the upcoming FAA ADS-B mandate, the time is now. For more information, go to: www.DuncanAviation.aero/adsb

Tags: Avionics Installation, ADS-B, NextGen

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