The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) is taking advantage of Mexico’s delayed ADS-B Out mandate to ask the country to accept 978 MHz ADS-B data, which is broadcast by universal access transceivers (UATs), as compliant within its airspace.
“Thousands of U.S. pilots travel to and from Mexico each year flying aircraft equipped with UAT ADS-B,” said Rune Duke, AOPA senior director of government affairs for airspace and air traffic. “Many U.S. general aviation pilots chose to equip their aircraft with UAT because of its affordability and simple installation. Harmonization between the U.S. and Mexican ADS-B rules and surveillance systems promotes seamless cross-border general aviation operations.”
Mexico originally announced that it would require 1090ES ADS-B Out beginning Jan. 1, 2020, in Class A, B, C, E above 10,000′ msl, and other specified airspaces. The effective date of the Mexican ADS-B Out mandate has now been moved to Jan. 1, 2022, Duke said.
In a March 3 letter to Mexico’s Agencia Federal de Aviación Civil (AFAC) and Servicios a la Navegación en el Espacio Aéreo Mexicano (SENEAM) in Spanish and in English, AOPA President Mark Baker asked the country’s federal civil aviation agency and air navigation services provider to consider investing in a ground-based ADS-B surveillance system that is compatible with the U.S. surveillance system, allowing both UAT and 1090ES aircraft to be rule compliant.
Harmonizing the Mexican and U.S. ADS-B rules would be a positive step towards facilitating seamless cross-border travel and would build on the success of Mexico’s recognition of BasicMed, Baker noted in his letter.
Allowing the use of 978 UAT ADS-B Out hardware in Mexico also will help to reduce the cost of compliance for many Mexican aircraft owners, Duke added.
“We look forward to working with AFAC, SENEAM, and our industry partners to harmonize ADS-B requirements and support UAT-equipped aircraft,” Duke said.