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Fri, May 28, 2010

AEA, GAMA Welcome FAA ADS-B Out Final Rule

AEA Members Say They Are "Looking Forward" To Receiving Installation Criteria

In response to the FAA’s release of its final rule, “Automatic Dependent Surveillance–Broadcast (ADS-B) Out Performance Requirements to Support Air Traffic Control (ATC) Service,” both the Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA) and the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) said Thursday they  welcomed its arrival.

“At first glance of the 149-page final rule, we are cautiously optimistic that the FAA listened to the majority of comments raised by industry in the NPRM, and promulgated a rule that will positively transform the future of our nation’s airspace system,” said Paula Derks, president of the AEA.

The final rule focuses solely on ADS-B Out and does not provide requirements for ADS-B In, stating that requirements are not sufficiently defined to implement ADS-B In at this time. The FAA also has determined in the final rule, as opposed to the NPRM, that a single bottom-mounted antenna is the minimum requirement for ATC surveillance. However, operators must note this rule does not remove or modify any existing antenna diversity requirements for transponders or TCAS/ACAS.

The FAA remains steadfast with a 2020 compliance date with NAS-wide ground infrastructure implementation scheduled to be complete in 2013. According to the agency, these dates would provide operators with at least seven years of operational experience with these services before the ADS-B compliance date of 2020.

AEA's Paula Derks

According to the contents of the rule, the FAA estimates the total cost to equip general aviation aircraft from 2012 through 2035 would range from $1.2 billion to $4.5 billion with a mid-point average of nearly $2.9 billion. The agency estimates general aviation could receive up to $200 million in ADS-B Out benefits.

“We look forward to reviewing the installation criteria, which will be contained in advisory materials to be published later,” Derks said.

“Our members are engineering and producing the state-of-the-art equipment necessary to equip the general aviation fleet over the next several years, and installation criteria will be critical in determining the amount of time and investment repair station personnel will incur with equipping thousands of GA airplanes,” she said.

On the manufacturing side, GAMA CEO Pete Bunce said "We commend Secretary LaHood and Administrator Babbitt for taking on modernization with such energy and focus. The ADS-B program demonstrates successful collaboration between the FAA and industry. This cooperation is essential as we look to deploy other components of the NextGen program."

GAMA's Pete Bunce

In order to start accruing the benefits of NextGen, the aircraft fleet must be equipped with ADS-B Out compliant avionics that meets specified performance requirements as defined by the FAA.
"With this rule, we have the standards in place that will allow for further acceleration of air traffic modernization particularly if we can incentivize operators to expedite the equipage of their aircraft,"  said Bunce.



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