The FAA this week released its final rule on ADS-B equipage in the mid-term, mandating ADS-B Out capability by 2020 for every aircraft using airspace where a transponder is currently required. Predictably, GA groups feel that they will be made to shoulder a large financial burden that ultimately will benefit airlines and air travelers rather than private pilots, although some concessions to general aviation were made in the final rule.
Some good resources to understand the consequences and subtleties of this rulemaking:
- Article in Air Transport World here
- Full text of rule here (via Federal Register)
- ATA press release here
- Analysis of costs/benefits to GA from AVweb here
- AOPA press release here
US Airways CEO Doug Parker says his airline has no interest in equipping its fleet with NextGen technologies on its own dime. Parker was asked a question about ATC equipage at the carrier’s media day, and Air Transport World reported his answer as follows:
“There is not a capacity issue in the United States right now as it relates to air traffic control, so putting in place NextGen ATC, while it makes all the sense in the world, isn’t going to save the airlines dramatic amounts. . .So our position is so long as we have to pay for [flight deck equipment], we prefer not to have it.”
US Airways also questioned FAA’s capacity growth estimates, saying that it sees growth in the range of 1-2% per year over the next 10 years.
FAA’s 20-year forecast for aviation demand is out. Some highlights:
- Total passengers on U.S. airlines domestically and internationally are forecast to increase from 704 million in 2009 to 1.21 billion by 2030, a cumulative rise of 75%.
- Domestic passenger enplanements will increase by 0.5 percent in 2010 and then grow an average of 2.5 percent per year during the remaining forecast period.
- U.S. airlines will reach one billion passengers a year by 2023.
- Total air cargo Registered Ton Miles (freight/express and mail) increase from 30.8 billion in 2009 to 86.6 billion in 2030 – up an average of 5.0 percent a year, for a cumulative rise of 281%.
- Total operations at airports are forecast to decrease 2.7 percent to 51.5 million in 2010, and then grow at an average annual rate of 1.5 percent reaching 69.6 million in 2030.
- At the nation’s 35 busiest airports, operations are expected to increase 60 percent from 2010 to 2030.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 19, 2010
CONTACT: David Gillies, Rep. Costello’s office
COSTELLO WELCOMES DR. KARLIN TONNER AS HEAD OF JPDO
WASHINGTON – U.S. Congressman Jerry Costello (D-IL), Chairman of the House Aviation Subcommittee, issued the following statement today regarding the announcement by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) that Dr. Karlin Tonner has been appointed Director of the Joint Planning and Development Office (JPDO). JPDO is responsible for coordinating the development and implementation of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen).
“I welcome Dr. Tonner to this critical position and look forward to working with her. JPDO’s mission is as important as any currently before the aviation community, and I remain concerned that it is not structured in a way that gives the Director the level of authority and access needed to be effective. I will continue to evaluate this issue as we move ahead. Ensuring the necessary inter-agency cooperation that NextGen requires is a very complicated managerial task and we need to get it right. Secretary LaHood and Administrator Babbitt understand this, and I believe Dr. Tonner’s extensive experience at NASA will be very helpful.”
NextGen will be front and center at a fascinating one-day conference in Washington DC on February 10, 2010.
The event is called “Beyond SOA and Cloud: Next Generation Information Exchange in High Consequence Environments”, and is hosted by the DC chapter of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association.
JPDO is collaborating with the event organizers and has contributed a case study focusing on NextGen. Meanwhile, speakers will include Michael T. Jones (Google’s Chief Technology Advocate) as well as a number of leaders from the world of government IT (list here).
Thanks to Guy Boy from the Florida Inst. of Technology for his heads-up about an interesting conference happening in late 2010. HCI-Aero — a symposium organized under the auspices of the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition will be looking at the future of crew-ground interaction from both an aeronautics and a spaceflight perspective. Many of the topics have great relevance to NextGen, i.e.:
- Automation and authority distribution
- Mission/trip planning and trajectory management
- Interacting in a 4D world
- UAV traffic integration
- New concepts of operations, separation modes
The call for papers and workshop/panel/demo proposals has just been published here; most submissions are due in April 2010.