Contract towers equal in safety, less in cost

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The 250 air traffic control towers operated under contract to the FAA handle 28% of all operations, but cost only 14% of the budget, according to statements before an aviation subcommittee whose members expressed concerns about possible severe cuts in operations if the President’s threatened automatic budget sequester goes into effect in January.

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Garmin introduces ADS-B lineup

Garmin has introduced a suite of certified and portable ADS-B solutions, providing options for any aircraft owner to satisfy the U.S. NextGen mandate for ADS-B Out and also gain access to the benefits of ADS-B In, including  traffic and subscription-free weather information.

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ADS-B’s two-for-one deal

FlytheDistance

This is the 11th in a series of articles looking at the impact of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) on GA pilots.

Sounds like a sale doesn’t it? Well, not really. Instead, it’s a reference to the FAA’s decision as part of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) to use two different “systems” within the ADS-B environment, so everyone on both sides of the aisle would be happy.

This is how it came down: The big boys on top, the transport carriers, have been using the newer Mode S 1090ES (Extended Squitter) transponder system that we discussed last month for some time know. Perfectly understandable since they have all the necessary attributes to work in the proposed ADS-B system environment.

But — don’t you just hate those buts? — the Mode S transponders have some limitations.

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So is NextGen really NextGen?

This is the ninth in a series of articles looking at the impact of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) on GA pilots.

What the heck is this all about? NextGen really not NextGen?

Over the course of the last 10 months we have reviewed quite a few navigation techniques that always brought something new to the table. It could be in hardware, procedures, rules, or even just seat of the pants know how. Each and every addition added improvements in safety, efficiency, or speed.

So were these previous developments considered NextGen? You bet they were. [Read more...]