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The Duncan Download Blog: Business Aviation Advice & Observations

Nextgen Acronym Confusion

Posted by Duncan Download Blog on Thu, Feb 23, 2017 @ 08:30 AM

Every day we field questions from operators about the FAA’s NextGen initiatives. This tells us there is still significant confusion about the various acronyms associated with NextGen. 

What You Need to Know About the ADS-B Mandate

Here are some of the more common questions surrounding the many acronyms and which acronym applies to which solution.

ADS-B (Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast). A cooperative system that transmits digital information regarding the identity, velocity and position of the aircraft to ATC (Air Traffic Control). This is a mandated item. Every aircraft planning on flying in controlled airspace after December 31, 2019, will need to have ADS-B Out. To comply with the ADS-B Out mandate, aircraft need a 1090-MHz Mode S extended squitter transponder combined with a certified GPS (Global Positioning System) navigation source such as WAAS GPS. ADS-B In allows the aircraft to read ADS-B signals from other aircraft.

WAAS (Wide Area Augmentation System). A system developed to augment GPS with the goal of improving its accuracy, integrity and availability. Intended to correct GPS signal errors, WAAS collects data from ground stations and satellites, allowing aircraft to rely on GPS for all phases of flight, from takeoff through Category I precision approaches. WAAS permits the use of more fuel efficient flight planning and approaches that have reduced minimums. WAAS-approved units also incorporate navigation procedures to take advantage of preferential flight routing. To upgrade to WAAS, certified equipment appropriate for the aircraft must be installed and properly approved by the FAA or its designee.

FANS 1/A– (Future Area Navigation Systems). This is a datalink system that lets pilots and ATC communicate directly using text transmissions that appear on the CDU (Central Control Unit). It requires a certain level of navigational performance that your aircraft must meet in order to fly overseas while communicating with ATC via CPDLC.

CPDLC (Controller Pilot Data Link Communications.) This is the method of communications being used for operators flying overseas outside of VHF coverage. The aircraft must meet a certain level of precision and performance to fly in these assigned flight routes. CPDLC is the text-messaging component of FANS 1/A.

Still have questions?

Tags: ADS-B, Avionics Installation, NextGen, FANS 1A

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