Less than six months to go to meet ADS-B mandate

written by australianaviation.com.au | August 5, 2016
ADS-B station at Woomera. (Airservices)
An ADS-B station at Woomera. (Airservices)

Airservices says there are about 1,000 Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) aircraft yet to install Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) technology as the clock ticks down for compliance with the federal government’s mandate.

The current mandates require all flights operating under instrument flight rules (IFR) to have ADS-B, which is a satellite-based technology enabling aircraft to be accurately tracked by air traffic controllers and other pilots without the need for conventional radar, by February 2 2017.

Figures from Airservices show about 82 per cent of all Australia-based IFR flights were fitted with ADS-B technology.

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“I would like to congratulate those operators and owners who have already fitted with ADS-B and are seeing the real benefits the technology offers,” Airservices executive general manager for air navigation services Stephen Angus said in a statement on Thursday.

“I would also encourage those who have not yet fitted their aircraft with ADS-B to make sure they do before 2 February 2017.”

Figures from Airservices showed 100 per cent of all commercial flights in Australian airspace that fly at 29,000ft and above were ADS-B equipped at the start of August. The figure was 94 per cent for business jets and 98 per cent for turboprops. However, just 51 per cent of helicopters had ADS-B.

And although there was presently no requirement for flights operating under visual flight rules (VFR) to have ADS-B, Airservices figures showed 343 aircraft were utilising the technology voluntarily.

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The roughly 1,000 IFR aircraft yet to have ADS-B installed included about 90 of Australia’s IFR helicopter fleet, Airservices said.

CHC Helicopter’s pilot and Jandakot base manager for Western Australia’s RAC Rescue Helicopter Service Mick Perren said there was a significant increase in situational awareness when flying with ADS-B.

“When operating out of Jandakot Airport, certainly one of the busiest airports in Australia, instead of just getting an icon on the traffic display, with ADS-B we get more information about the traffic,” Perren said in the Airservices statement.

“We get a much better picture of what is happening around us and this is where we have seen the biggest advantage.”

CHC Helicopter pilot and Jandakot base manager for Western Australia’s RAC Rescue Helicopter Service Mick Perren. (Airservices)
CHC Helicopter pilot and Jandakot base manager for Western Australia’s RAC Rescue Helicopter Service Mick Perren. (Airservices)

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2 Comments

  • Paul

    says:

    “Figures from Airservices showed 100 per cent of all commercial flights in Australian airspace were ADS-B equipped at the start of August”…. utterly false!

  • David P

    says:

    Perhaps it should have said 100% of Commercial Flights at FL290+.

    Certainly there are RPT operating IFR below FL290 that are not yet equipped – although that number is decreasing weekly.

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