LEE’S SUMMIT, Mo. — In response to the Federal Aviation Administration’s release of its final rule, “Automatic Dependent Surveillance–Broadcast (ADS-B) Out Performance Requirements to Support Air Traffic Control (ATC) Service,” the Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA), which represents the avionics manufacturers and FAA Part 145 repair stations directly involved in manufacturing the equipment for ADS-B, as well as installing and maintaining the equipment, welcomed the arrival of the final rule.
“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.
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.
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Founded in 1957, the Aircraft Electronics Association represents nearly 1,300 member companies in more than 40 countries, including approved maintenance organizations specializing in maintenance, repair and installation of aircraft electronics systems in general aviation aircraft. The AEA membership also includes manufacturers of aircraft electronics equipment, instrument repair facilities, instrument manufacturers, airframe manufacturers, test equipment manufacturers, major distributors, engineers and educational institutions.