In our previous article, we discussed everything you need to know about ADS-B and how the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has mandated its installation in aircraft flying in some restricted airspace. ADS-B improves safety and enhances efficiency in the airspace, hence by 1st January 2020, your aircraft must be equipped with ADS-B Out to fly in controlled airspace. Today the focus of team iJET shifts to the ADS-B Mandate, and how the rule works in USA, Europe, and different parts of the world.
The FAA has provided 4 categories of airspace, according to which you must know if your aircraft requires ADS-B Out and till which altitude.
|A||ADS-B Out required to fly at all altitudes.|
|B||ADS-B Out required to fly from the surface to 10,000 ft mean sea level (MSL). This also includes the airspace from portions of Class Bravo that extend beyond the Mode C veil up to 10,000 ft MSL (i.e.- SEA, CLE, PHX).|
|C||ADS-B Out required to fly from the surface up to 4,000 ft MSL. The also includes the airspace above the lateral boundary up to 10,000 ft MSL.|
|E||ADS-B Out required to fly above 10,000 ft MSL in all the US states. This is excluding airspace at and below 2,500 ft above ground level (AGL).|
This category also includes the airspace over the Gulf of Mexico at and above 3,000 ft MSL within 12 nm of the coastline of the United States.
It should be noted that ADS-B Out will also be required to fly in airspace within 30 nautical miles (Mode C veil) at all Class B locations from the surface up to 10,000 feet MSL.
Airspace that mandates the use of a Transponder, currently, will also require aircraft to be equipped with a Version 2 ADS-B Out system by 1st January 2020. This can be either a 1090ES (DO-260B) ADS-B system or a UAT (DO-282B) ADS-B system.
In the US, ADS-B is an essential part of the planned NextGen airspace, for upgrading the way the National Airspace System (NAS) operates by creating better aircraft visibility at a lower overall cost than before. Thus, aircraft operating in the aforementioned airspaces in the US must be equipped with ADS-B Out.
If you are sure that you’ll never fly in the restricted airspace where ADS-B Out is mandatory or internationally, you can use a simpler UAT-based ADS-B Out box, which broadcasts over 978 MHz. But if you operate aircraft above 18,000 ft or fly outside the United States, then you have to equip your aircraft with a Mode-S transponder-based ADS-B transmitter. If confused about which equipment to use, Flying’s article ‘The Countdown to ADS-B Compliance’ offers you different ADS-B Out options to make your decision.
The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) has provided a regulatory framework on current and envisaged aircraft avionics fitment required for aircraft operating in European airspace. According to which, “All aircraft operating Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) in Europe must be compliant with Mode S Elementary Surveillance, while Commercial Air Transport types must be compliant with both Mode S Enhanced Surveillance and ADS-B ‘OUT’ requirements.” While the Elementary Mode S transponders have in large been met, the upgrade to enhanced Mode S and ADS-B ‘OUT’ is significantly more difficult for any regional aircraft operators and there is a chance of many aircrafts not being able to meet the deadline.
The Airports Authority of India (AAI), which manages the country’s airspace, commented that India has completed its ground network for ADS-B tracking of aircraft. In Australia–B equipment is mandatory for IFR category aircraft. While Canada is currently using ADS–B but for limited air traffic control. It is being used mainly in the Hudson Bay area. For a detailed report on the other parts of the world, read JDA Journal’s report on ADS-B Update- Bits Of Information From Around The World.
Operators and pilots should know that ADS-B Out avionics won’t be required in Class D airports with control towers. But if you intend to fly long-distances then iJET suggests that it is better to equip your aircraft with ADS-B Out. Also, in future ADS-B will make radar-based ATC obsolete, because of its multi-function capabilities. With only 14 months left to the deadline, aircraft operators and owners should start planning the upgradation today. iJET suggests keeping four to six weeks aside, as this is the approximate time for ADS-B upgrades.