As business aircraft owners in the United States continue working to meet the looming Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out year-end mandate, the time is now for European operators to investigate options for completing their upgrades by Europe’s June 7, 2020 deadline. Collins Aerospace has validated a number of supplemental type certificates (STCs) outside of the United States to meet rising demand. A number of certifications are already approved by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), with a few remaining approvals targeted for completion by early this summer.
Now is the time for action
“At Collins Aerospace, we’re committed to completing product updates and procuring the necessary part certifications so that operators can schedule their upgrades as soon as possible,” said JP Rivet, director of Marketing/Business Development for Business and Regional Avionics for Collins Aerospace in the Europe, Middle East and Africa region. “One lesson we’ve learned from our efforts in the United States - where the deadline is five months earlier than in Europe - is that too many operators are waiting until the last minute, which means they risk not being able to fly their aircraft after the deadline.”
“One lesson we’ve learned from our efforts in the United States - where the deadline is five months earlier than in Europe - is that too many operators are waiting until the last minute, which means they risk not being able to fly their aircraft after the deadline.”
Although the number of aircraft in Europe requiring updates is smaller than in the United States, there are also fewer authorized dealers from which to procure necessary services. Acting now can help prevent lengthy waits and increased costs.
“Operators should contact their approved dealers as soon as possible to make sure their upgrade is scheduled and completed by June 2020,” Rivet emphasized.
Considerations for optimizing aircraft downtime
There are several considerations operators in Europe should explore as they look ahead to upgrading their aircraft. First, although the European mandate does not dictate the same GPS performance levels as the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) for aircraft operating in U.S. airspace, aircraft that will be -- or have the potential to be -- flying in the U.S. will need to be updated at the higher levels. Owners should consider future uses of their aircraft when upgrading to ensure they can go wherever they want whenever they want, especially given that there are mandates for ADS-B Out in place throughout the world.
Operators may also consider additional upgrades beyond those mandated for ADS-B Out. Collins Aerospace has developed numerous turn-key avionics upgrade packages that have been certified to give aircraft owners the chance to modernize their aircraft beyond ADS-B requirements for years to come. The packages include the popular Pro Line 21™ and Pro Line Fusion® integrated avionics systems.
Today, there are close to 4,900 aircraft flying with Collins’ proven and reliable Pro Line 21. Continuous improvements to existing Pro Line 21 systems bring new capabilities as operating requirements evolve. Upgrading an existing Pro Line 21 system, for example, can bring a whole new flying experience to pilots through localizer performance vertical guidance (LPV) capabilities, flight management system (FMS) updates, faster database uploads and synthetic vision. More information about the Pro Line 21 upgrade in Europe is available in this video.
“Customized avionics packages for a number of aircraft from Beechcraft King AirⓇ to Bombardier Challenger to Hawker aircraft are currently certified and available from Collins-authorized dealers throughout Europe,” Rivet said.
Comprehensive information about ADS-B Out requirements is available to global aircraft operators via the Collins website. After entering a specific aircraft make and model, operators can access information regarding available upgrades, certification status by various government authorities, as well as applicable OEM service bulletins. Collins is committed to providing innovative solutions to aircraft operators around the world for efficient, unrestricted flight in modern airspace for the remaining years of their aircraft.