recommended reading

FAA: Aircraft must adopt new communications system by 2020

The Federal Aviation Administration has taken another step forward on its overhaul of the national air traffic control system with new aircraft tracking standards.

A final rule, published in Friday's Federal Register, requires aircraft to adopt Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B), a new data-based position-monitoring system designed to improve communications between pilots and air traffic controllers, by January 2020.

Specifically, the rule mandates that pilots begin broadcasting their positions via ADS-B Out with certain standards of accuracy and establishes equipage requirements. It does not apply to ADS-B In, which allows an aircraft to receive and display satellite information. According to the rule, these technologies still are in their infancy, so operators will not be required to equip aircraft immediately.

"This rule gives the green light for manufacturers to begin building the onboard equipment that will allow our air traffic controllers to know where aircraft are with great precision and reliability," said FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt in a statement. "That is one of the key elements of [the] NextGen [air traffic control modernization] that will improve the safety and efficiency of flight."

The rule applies to aircraft flying through certain classes of airspace, above 10,000 feet and around busy airports. ADS-B already is in use in the Gulf of Mexico; Louisville, Ky.; Philadelphia; and Juneau, Alaska. According to the agency, ADS-B will be rolled out nationwide by 2013.

FAA on Wednesday awarded $4.4 billion in industry contracts to Boeing Co., General Dynamics and ITT to develop components for NextGen, including weather, communications and navigation systems, as well as automation, operations and procedures.

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats


Close [ x ] More from Nextgov

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

  • PIV- I And Multifactor Authentication: The Best Defense for Federal Government Contractors

    This white paper explores NIST SP 800-171 and why compliance is critical to federal government contractors, especially those that work with the Department of Defense, as well as how leveraging PIV-I credentialing with multifactor authentication can be used as a defense against cyberattacks

  • Toward A More Innovative Government

    This research study aims to understand how state and local leaders regard their agency’s innovation efforts and what they are doing to overcome the challenges they face in successfully implementing these efforts.

  • From Volume to Value: UK’s NHS Digital Provides U.S. Healthcare Agencies A Roadmap For Value-Based Payment Models

    The U.S. healthcare industry is rapidly moving away from traditional fee-for-service models and towards value-based purchasing that reimburses physicians for quality of care in place of frequency of care.

  • GBC Flash Poll: Is Your Agency Safe?

    Federal leaders weigh in on the state of information security


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.