A recent report from the Department of Transportation’s Inspector General’s Office states that just 44% of general aviation aircraft are equipped with ADS-B Out, with just months remaining before the Jan. 1, 2020 mandate.
The report notes that:
- 44% of general aviation aircraft (62,494 of 143,322) that are estimated to equip with ADS-B Out have done so. This segment of operators has been slow to equip and has seen only a 56% increase in equipage since May 1, 2018.
- 63% of higher-end turbojet and turboprop aircraft (14,166 of 22,596) estimated to equip have done so.
- Conversely, only 40% of the single- and multi-engine piston aircraft (48,328 of 120,726) estimated to equip have done so.
For its audit, the IG’s office reviewed monthly data collected by FAA and MITRE from May 1, 2018, through June 1, 2019, regarding ADS-B Out equipage rates of commercial and general aviation aircraft. Officials also conducted interviews with FAA representatives, MITRE, and industry stakeholders
The report was put together at the request of Chairmen Bill Shuster and Frank LoBiondo of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and its Aviation Subcommittee, who cited concerns that aircraft owners wouldn’t meet the 2020 deadline.
“Overall, we found that ADS-B Out equipage is increasing,” Inspector General Calvin L. Scovel III noted in a letter to Congress that accompanied the report. “As of June 1, 2019, 73,421 commercial, international, and general aviation aircraft were in compliance with the ADS-B-Out mandate, an increase of nearly 69% since May 1, 2018.”
However, he added, equipage rates vary by segment of the industry:
- Commercial operators have higher equipage rates than general aviation. While 76% of commercial operators have equipped their aircraft with ADS-B Out, only 44% of general aviation operators have equipped their aircraft with the technology.
- Mainline and regional commercial carriers are equipping at a higher rate than smaller commercial carriers. ADS-B Out equipage rates at mainline (81%) and regional (73%) carriers have more than doubled since May 1, 2018. However, equipage at smaller commercial operators is lagging, with only 44% of the fleet equipped.
- Equipage rates varied among general aviation operators. While 63% of higher-end turbojet and turboprop operators estimated to equip with ADS-B have done so, only 40% of single- and multi-engine piston operators estimated to equip have done so.
In his letter, Scovill notes that these are preliminary results of the audit, with the audit expected to be complete this winter. Included in the complete audit will be specific requests from Congress, including:
- Determine the equipage rates for ADS-B and other NextGen-enabling technologies on commercial and general aviation aircraft
- Ascertain the reasons behind aircraft operators’ decisions to equip or not equip with these technologies
- Assess FAA and aircraft operators’ plans to meet the 2020 ADS-B Out equipage deadline.
Are you equipped?
Have you equipped with ADS-B to meet the 2020 deadline? If so, why did you equip? If you haven’t, what’s behind that decision? Leave your answers in the comments below.
The SkyEcho is totally portable, ads-b in/out, cost $600, would solve this problem.Its approved in UK and Australia. Why is it not usable in the US?
Because infrastructure stakeholders Garmin, Appareo, and L3 have so much invested in 1090ES. (politics)
michael hamlett says
here’s a thought. everyone has or can get ADSB-IN. affordable with antenna/ipad combo.
adsb in gives you weather and traffic. the issue is transmitting the traffic. if the radar centers transmitted to the adsb antennas aircraft data (altitude/heading/ground speed/etc) then this info would simply be in the adsb-in signal. you are telling EACH aircraft to xmt this data when every radar station in the country already gets/processes and could rexmt via the already established adsb system. each aircraft only needs the receiver. then if a change occurs in the system the federally funded radar stations make the change and all works.
its so simple, the government could never think of it.
now tell me why it cant work.
Michael. There are 2 reasons that doesn’t work
1)The positional accuracy of the radar system is not as good as the positional accuracy of a WAAS capable GPS position source on each aircraft. This is part of NextGen and allowing aircraft to fly closer together with less separation requirements. With WAAS GPS position, we are “more sure” of the exact position of aircraft.
2)The ground based ADS-B receiver antennas are much cheaper to install, have less maintenance and have better coverage than the current radar system. I can attest to this flying in the Rocky mountains.
So each radar station is getting position information, but it’s not as accurate and doesn’t have the coverage of the ADS-B system. Also, if each aircraft is transmitting its position and each has ADS-B-In, then the system works where there is no radar or ADS-B ground antenna to relay the information to other aircraft. Even at the airport down in the canyon, with lots of traffic in the pattern.
I’m in no way endorsing this should be your only traffic avoidance solution. Your eyes are still the best for spotting ALL traffic in VFR conditions. I am aware that not all flying objects will have ADS-B Out.
michael hamlett says
i think this ADSB out is just the tip of the iceburg. over the next 5 years, GA will be “pay up or get out” to make way for more commercial and high dollar flyers.
this action is a nail in the coffin for low budget GA flyers who just like “flying around”.
i truely believe our days are numbered.
Sierra Tango says
Yes, and if you pay up early, you may have to pay up again when they decide that 1090 with “diversity” will be mandated…..and who knows what else will be added that the government agencies forgot or didn’t know yet. The drama will play out starting 1/1/2020.
“inally, I have some major reservations about those wing tip or tail light systems. I do not see how they can package a high enough power transmitter to make them operate correctly.”
Yet they work wonderfully.
Ken T says
The number of installs are rising rapidly now that TailBeacon is shipping. That’s the way I was going until my transponder crapped out and I decided to go with a transponder/ADSB-Out all-in-one box combined with a hard wired, remotely mounted Stratus 3i for ADSB-In.
SkyBeacon and TailBeacon, at under $2000 plus minimal charge for a 15 minute install, are the way to go.
Our Ercoupe Owners club did a group purchase for a 13% discount, putting the cost around $1300 with the $500 FAA rebate. Pretty awesome deal.
wait until they bake in the sun a few years and get back to me on “work wonderfully” reviews
Forgot. Those who think they don’t use or need to fly into “Rule” airspace better rethink that notion. There are a lot of places in the Country where getting past a busy area is going to force too many non conforming airplanes to fly in a narrow corridor to miss the Rule airspace. That problem could be equally limiting depending upon where you live and fly.
Lots of folks forget that the 30nm veil IS rule airspace. Further, they forget that you can’t fly above the ceiling of Class B or C airspace … even though it’s not technically IN them. And, the highest altitude a non equipped airplane will be able to fly is 9,500 (with an exception in mountains). Example: The Tampa (TPA) and Orlando (MCO) airspace. The 30 nm veils almost touch. A non equipped airplane headed to south Florida will have to fly in a narrow strip basically over the Winter Haven (GIF) airport. Lots of traffic in a narrow corridor. Not good.
Many folks who resisted for all sorts of reasons are caught off guard when they see how many airplanes they never saw flying in their vicinity if they equip with “in,” too. Unless you’re flying in busy airspace, there’s no guarantee that a conforming emitter will ‘light up” the airspace you’re in.
I made the jump with my C172 a couple of years ago. My situation was a bit different because my second Cessna/ARC transponder had failed and I’d had enough of that crap. When Garmin came up with a ‘promo’ package for their ‘out’ box, a vendor priced it lower at EAA and the FAA offered a rebate, I decided it was time. I don’t really need it where I fly in rural Wisconsin but … who knows what I might want to do OR a subsequent owner — when the time comes — might want to do. As an A&P with avionics experience, I installed it myself. In the end, it cost me well under $3K total. Had I had an operating solid state transponder, I would probably have gone with the GDL 82 … but I didn’t have that luxury.
My main heartburn with using a 1090ES box is lack of anonymity. Also, I fear that the FAA will ultimately begin to “violate” pilots based solely on computer analysis of flight paths. A bit like those “red light camera” systems where you pay the fine or risk a higher fine if you fight ’em. With Canada going to a space based system — vs our ground based system — I also fear that the “PhD” who came up with ADS-B along with his bean counting brethren will decide that maintaining the ground based system is too expensive and decide to order all aircraft to be equipped with dual diversity boxes. I could also foresee a two way data stream requirement, as well. If that happens, bring still more money to use YOUR airspace.
Finally, I have some major reservations about those wing tip or tail light systems. I do not see how they can package a high enough power transmitter to make them operate correctly. Anyone contemplating one of those better tread carefully lest ye make the formal box you ultimately install that much more expensive. After the 2020 deadline comes and goes and the flurry of installs dies down, I foresee a slight drop in the price of systems anyhow. ADS-B installs ARE the current bread and butter of avionics shops. Once the number of installs goes down, they’ll have no choice but to price them lower.
I equipped my RV6 with 1090ES a couple years ago when the first rebate was offered and I wouldn’t think of going back. The expense has been well worth the improvement in safety and situational awareness to me. I fly several long cross country trips each year. If you dont fly in C or B then don’t equip… that is your choice. Good luck selling your plane after the deadline…. you will pay one way or the other in reduced value of your plane if it is required to be equipped.
Keith Richter says
I decided to install ADS-B in and out for several reasons. First, like other optional tools on my panel (GPS, engine monitor, auto pilot), it allows me to fly easier and more safely than without it. I also want to continue flying in Class B or C airspace and in the west it’s often necessary to exceed 10,000 feet due to terrain.
It’s certainly not inexpensive, but in the short time I’ve had it, I’ve been very happy to see traffic and weather on my panel long before ATC gives me a heads up. That doesn’t at all mean that eyes out the window are any less important, but if/when all GA aircraft are equipped it will be a much safer time to be in the air.
Scot Trueblood says
One reason for the slow equipage rate is that avionics guys are swamped with ADS-B installs. In my area, an avionics guy who I was trying to get to do a couple of things on my aircraft doesn’t have time for anything but ADS-B installs and he is booked completely over the horizon.
This is very true still today. 1/6/20 I have ADSB 34 installs on the books.
michael hamlett says
the question is simple..what FAA PHD thought it made sense to force a $12k c152 to install a $3k device to continue to operate at a class c flight school?
AIR-130, AFS-1, a few others, … (with the help of a GA lobby group) and MITRE… I can name names.
Much of GA, most of DoD, nearly all drones, and even some air carrier aircraft are not equipping with FAA’s seriously flawed version of ADS-B because the present FAA over-specified and insecure version of ADS-B is a very bad idea. The deadline will not stand, without serious adverse consequences. As FAA has foolishly stolen the original good idea of ADS-B, and instead tried to implement it as a form of “Pseudo-radar”, it will not only never adequately work, but it is now unnecessarily expensive for operators to equip. Accordingly in the minds of most GA pilots and operators (not to say the least the rest of the world, who are NOT following FAA’s lead for requiring DO-260B SBAS or equivalent compliance), that leads to a very negative cost/benefit ratio for nearly all operators. Hence the IG’s correct assertion of a dismal current US ADS-B equipage level and rate, nowhere near adequate for the US fleet to come close to meeting the 2020 FAA deadline.
Now what? The 2020 deadline will likely not stand unless FAA either issues additional “easy to get ad-hoc airspace entry waivers”, or unless FAA is willing to further cripple if not even destroy much of the current GA fleet. Sustaining and enforcing the present ill-advised 91.225/.227 rule and over-specified DO-260B and illogical UAT related technical requirements , will seriously adversely affect large numbers of GA operations, and further depress values of many types of GA aircraft, as well as deny what otherwise would be completely legitimate airspace access.
Just one simple example illustrates the point of the seriously adverse impact to GA. In the Seattle area, thousands of non-ADS-B Equipped aircraft will have to move out from under the Mode C veil, and they will not even be able to safely operate to the San Juan Islands because of the Navy Whidbey Class C airspace, for which even most Navy aircraft will NOT be ADS-B equipped, until 2029, if forever. Instead they will be forced to unnecessarily fly around the Class C airspace, over many 10s of miles of open water, with no suitable emergency landing options. Similarly, they will unnecessarily be forced to fly in areas with marginal weather, near or in mountainous terrain, all to avoid military defined Class C airspace where the military aircraft are not even ADS-B equipped, and most never will be. This is absurd.
ADS-B was once (and still is) an excellent idea, when used as originally intended, as a short-range limited air-air link primarily to sense and depict traffic information. In that role, typical GA aircraft could have been entirely adequately equipped for under about $500, using any GPS source. Even hand held ADS-B units could have been easily produced for Cubs, Stearmans, gliders, small drones using mixed airspace, and even parachutists. The link with Air Traffic Service (ATS) was originally meant to be ADS-C and ADS-A, NOT ADS-B (as defined when FANS 1 was originally born in the early 1990s).
The high equipage fraction touted by FAA for the airlines is entirely misleading. The FAA is likely counting as “compliant” airlines having exemptions (12555) to delay until 2024 meeting the rule. Most newly delivered aircraft from Boeing and Airbus were already engineered, equipped, or provisioned via the implementation of FANS with RNP and ADS-C as well as ADS-B since the 1990s anyway. Other aircraft will be completely phased out of US service by 2024. Foreign airlines don’t want to have to equip to many different ADS-B standards. Even broad regions like Europe are NOT requiring foolish compliance in the same vein as FAA.
Note that many DoD aircraft will NEVER comply, or have until 2029 for other DoD aircraft to comply, …airlines have until 2024 via exemption 12555 to address the position source data issue for many of their aircraft [reference the FAA’s completely ill-advised and unnecessary RTCA DO-260B requirement (i.e., WAAS)]. Security is still NOT adequately addressed [high school level knowledge kids can hack and spoof ADS-B, let alone its vulnerability to a dedicated technically sophisticated threat]. Drones are NOT yet addressed. The diversity antenna issue [which is very important to reliably see other traffic] isn’t addressed. Diversity antennas are likely to be needed for other countries like Canada, and it is still not addressed by FAA except for TCAS. Costs for equipping some types of aircraft are so unrealistic that aircraft values are being depressed [if not being forced into outright being scrapped]. Such a small percentage of some classes of aircraft are yet equipped that it is unavoidable that FAA is going to have to make some type of further accommodation, even beyond the inadequate “letter of authorization” method recently discussed by FAA, for special purpose equipage dispensations.
FAA’s ADS-B 2020 mandate is now a complete unnecessary mess, that could have been readily avoided, simply by having followed New Zealand, Australia, Europe, and Canada’s lead, allowing any GNSS source, and not requiring a foolish ADS-B standard based on RTCA DO-260B.
Hopefully the new FAA Administrator will now help start to clean up this giant FAA unnecessary ADS-B deadline and conceptual mess, along with re-directing and redesigning a massively failing, poorly designed, and overly expensive ineffective NextGen.
I equipped with Status-I for about 3500 installed. (Skybeacon might be 2500.). Meets the OUT mandate, and view traffic and wx with an iPad. After seeing close-in ‘Same Altitude’ traffic more than once now I fail to understand why any of us small airplane types wouldn’t see the benefit to outweigh the cost. It’s AMAZING how much traffic is lurking and we never see it. And the Wx stuff ain’t bad either.
Brad S. says
Nick. How is the presentation of traffic on the I Pad and is it easy to see and interpret.
Daniel Carlson says
If I “could” afford it, I’d install it.
Steve Rock says
I have ADS-B out in my 172. I do not fly in C or B much but I do occasionally in SF bay/So Cal. Without ADS-B there will be (come Jan 2020) a 30 mile no-go zone around SFO and LAX, which will keep unequipped aircraft out of the SF bay area completely unless they are type certified no electrical.
Never the less, it was a no-brainer because without it you are very limited as to the data you will receive with an ADS-B in receiver if you do not have ADS-B out.
If you think you have ADS-B in without having ADS-B out, you are somewhat mistaken. You have very limited visibility and you only have it at all by the grace of a nearby (in both vertical and horizontal terms) ADS-B out equipped aircraft.
ADS-B has saved my bacon a couple of times, and there is no way I am flying without it any more. It is an important supplement to the standard MkI eyeball. If I were to buy another aircraft, it would get ADS-B in/out on day one if it did not already have it.
JimH in CA says
I don’t have a need to fly in class B or C airspace here in No. CA., so I don’t have plans to install ADBS-out.
I do have ADSB-in and note a large number of transponder and no-transponder aircraft [ primary radar only].
There are a substantial number of no-electrics aircraft that fly out of the 7 local airports here that cannot equip.
If the cost gets considerably lower I will reconsider .
Nate D'Anna says
Jim, realistically, I don’t the cost won’t be getting “considerably lower” any time soon.
I installed the uAvionix sky beacon and while it cost me a shade under $2K installed, I think it’s the best deal you will find.
$2k is not chump change, but from a cost standpoint, it beats all the other options out there.
Bob Blackburn says
I changed over to ADSB in and out in my Comanche PA24 for $6000, a lot of money but safety and keeping the value of the airplane up was the reason I changed early. Works great for flight following on long cross country in the West.
Larry Joe Nemecek says
If you think that the FAA did this for GA’s convenience and that the FAA ‘s ability to keep track of everyone is just a coincidence I have a bridge that you might be interested in.
Pat McClure says
Clearly it has never been for GA. The purpose is to get more airliners in the sky hauling more people without building more airports. ADS-B is like health insurance – it only works if everyone has to have it. It’s a shame that GA has to spend $5K per airplane to help the airlines. IMHO it should be paid for with a tax on airline tickets.
Michael S Hamlett says
so much the government will subsidize, but im sure this will never make the list.
The end is nigh. Complaining and resisting installing this CRITICAL gear is almost over. Do it or quit flying the aircraft not equipped.
JimH in CA says
We will be able to continue flying; just not in class B or C airspace. Even in CA, that’s 90% of the air.
Class A, B, and C airspace. (about 20 airports in CA)
Class E airspace above 10,000 feet MSL (forget flying over the Sierras)
Around those airports identified in 14 CFR part 91, Appendix D, in CA that’s SF and San Diego Intl.
You will be a hazard to others if you don’t at least have TCAS.
JimH in CA says
Those 20 B and C airports represent 6.3 k sq.miles of the 164k sq miles of CA….3.8%. So, I’m good to fly the other 96.2%.
In the Sierras….read the reg.
As far as flying hazards….my transponder is always on. others will ‘see’ me.
Ken T says
That’s like saying your kids don’t need vaccinations in hopes all the other kids are vaccinated.
Put the responsibility on everyone else to see me. Nice.
JimH in CA says
how many of the no-transponder aircraft can you see with ADSB-out.?
[ answer…none ! ]
There are dozens of no-electric aircraft that fly in my area, so we actually have to looks everywhere to see them.
Michael S Hamlett says
really? thats your comment? i live in NC. do you realize how much open space there is here that surrounds RDU and Charlotte. i can go anywhere i want in my “not equipped” aircraft.
“Critical”? seems i checked my non existent MEL and i dont see adsb-out anywhere? hmmmm
Sharon Tinkler says
Small airplane owners are starting to get bills from FBO’s for flying through their Class D (not a typo) airspace. The $ value is small, but the implication is enormous. Installation cost is half the value of my luscombe. If safety were a concern then skydivers, ultralights and paragliders would be required to wear one. They are a FAR greater risk than fixed wing pilots with certificates.
Gary Moore says
@Sharon – are you referring to Canada? I’m just curious..FBO’s actually have jurisdiction over airspace??
Sharon Tinkler says
I am referring to Connecticut.
JimH in CA says
A number of class D airports here charge a landing fee, including a touch-and-go, and dropping off a passenger.
There are no fees to fly in any airspace here; B,C,D,E,G…
The airspace is controlled by the FAA only.
Steve Rock says
Sounds like urban legend. I am sure AOPA would love to hear about it if there is any truth to the rumor. There is no way, no how that an FBO has any standing to charge anyone for anything for merely flying through Class D airspace.
There is nothing to stop them from sending you a bill.
Office supply companies do it ALL THE TIME for stuff they never shipped you .
And the accounts payable dept sometimes pays it , sometimes not.
It’s called a scam
Joe D. says
> I am referring to Connecticut.
By coincidence, when I returned home I received a bill from the Bridgeport, CT airport’s collection agency for $7 per takeoff while I was there on a recent cross-country.
Not the FBO but it certainly left a bad taste in my mouth.
Ken T says
Hmmmm…I gotta call BS on this comment. Ain’t happening.
My son and I just had the in/out ADS-B transponder installed in our 2005 Cessna 182T at a a cost of just under $8,000. That’s a lot of money but fortunately we’re both professionals so can afford it but many GA aircraft owners can’t afford such an outlay so it’s completely understandable that a low percentage of aircraft owners have not installed the system. Why should the inspector general be surprised by the 44% number? It’s a killer for GA and I have to wonder if that’s actually the government plan. Get rid of those pesky GA aircraft owners who are cluttering up the skies?
Sierra Tango says
Yes, and turn the sky over to the jumpers and paragliders. Who thinks that’s a good plan?
The cost relative to the value of the airplane. Is prohibitive. Now Canada is talking about divergent antennas and a satellite based system. Which is more expensive. There are also privacy issues with the 1090 extended squitter systems. And the Universal Access frequency is not so universal. This may be a system that will be obsolete once it is implemented.
That leaves few options for an owner looking for low cost, privacy and a flight into Canada once in awhile.
If you can’t afford to install ADS-B out, then you should not be in the air with that aircraft. There is no more a privacy issue than ATC seeing you on radar. Or existing TCAS systems doing the same. I have been using it for five years. It is the PRIMARY tool now used in the cockpit to avoid problems in the air.
michael hamlett says
so you just said 55% of GA aircraft (those not with OUT) should not be in the air.
im not putting off because of privacy, im putting it off because the regulations say its optional. in my opinion this entire requirement could have been done with a transponder add on. most of us have xpndrs. even my 65 140 has a garmin 327. but this multi 1000 dollar device is not sufficient. work within what is already installed. not a new gadget. you’re telling me that its going to cost me 3 grand to send out a signal. I see all those blips on my IPAD. but you know what. im looking outside coming into an airport. im not focused on my makeshift radar because I know its only part of the picture.
If ADS-B is so critical to safe flying, how in the world did we pilots survive for the last 100 years? I wouldn’t fly with any pilot whose PRIMARY collision avoidance technique was heads down at a display in the cockpit.
I haven’t installed, I know the technology limitations, and I will keep flying my aircraft!
Because you didn’t….how many mid airs have there been in that 100 years. More than zero. It’s one thing to resist going from analog to digital in the cockpit, yet another to resist adding a critical safety component. Drones will eventually be equipped with ADS-B. Have fun avoiding them as they begin to fill the skies.
A mode C transponder does not include your N number.
To say ADS-b is no more a privacy issue than and xpdr demonstrates your a high level of not knowing what your’re talking about.
How could you say anything so ignorant of facts?
Rich, clearly you’re new to reading gbigs comments in this forum. He’s famous for ignorance and ego.
For decades the Mode S transponder (without the ADS-B ES) has transmitted the aircraft’s ICAO address. Every Mode S transponder from heavy iron down to GA did that.
The Garmin GTX330 product was widely adopted by GA mainly to get TIS traffic data for operators based in areas where it was available. Cheapest path to get traffic in the cockpit (back then with area limitations). When the owner’s upgraded to 330ES, they didn’t loose privacy due to ADS-B.(since they didn’t have any already).
Michael Quinn says
It cost me 20% of the value of the plane just to keep my freedom to fly… I guess freedom really isn’t free…
Fuel is free?
michael hamlett says
I don’t understand your statement. you didn’t have to do anything. Just stay clear of Charlie. if that is not possible then I do understand. ill jump on the bandwagon when I truly HAVE to. right, ill fly around Charlie. I can still get FF so for me its a non-issue. I truly expect the rules to change to ALL AIRSPACE in the next 5 years.
Kenneth Hetge says
The cost is the killer. Even the low end units are $2-3K, which is a lot of money for a GA owner to cough up. Do you replace your water heater or air conditioner or furnace or install ADSB? The answer is easy….