Aireon is providing the first ever, global air traffic surveillance system using a space-based Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) network that meets the strict, real-time Air Traffic Service (ATS) surveillance requirements for air traffic separation services anywhere in the world.
ADS-B is an air traffic surveillance technology that relies on aircraft broadcasting their identity, a precise Global Positioning System (GPS) position and other information derived from on-board systems. The data is broadcast every half a second from the aircraft, and is being used by Air Traffic Controllers (ATCs) to identify and separate aircraft in real time.
ATS surveillance service is clearly defined by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) but, put simply, it’s the ability to reliably and in near-real time detect key flight attributes such as position, level and intent.
Space-based ADS-B provides full, continuous, global air traffic surveillance, whereas before, 70 percent of the world had no access to ATS surveillance information (i.e. the oceans, polar regions, mountainous regions, jungles, deserts). Space-based ADS-B significantly improves Air Traffic Management (ATM) safety, efficiency, predictability and capacity, while reducing overall infrastructure costs.
Space-based ADS-B extends the same ADS-B technology currently received on ground-based receivers to space. Aireon’s high performance payloads, hosted on the Iridium LEO satellite constellation, receives aircraft ADS-B messages with an exact level of precision and security, and relays them to ATCs in real time. With significant overlap and redundancy built in the Iridium constellation, the Aireon system provides a safety-of-life service to the aviation industry.
As a turn-key surveillance solution, space-based ADS-B allows for cost-effective, seamless and rapid implementation to meet future capacity needs and support compliance with regulatory requirements. Additionally, by providing surveillance in remote regions, Aireon can provide new routes and a multitude of benefits to all aviation stakeholders.
For ANSPs to use Aireon data, a Service Delivery Point (SDP) must be established with two telecommunication (telco) lines, one primary and one backup. The two lines are used for Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) Wide Area Network (WAN) connections and redundancy purposes to connect to the Aireon data. Additionally, two telco lines are required to meet ATS surveillance service availability. The SDP is the only equipment needed onsite to receive Aireon data. Each telco line feeds one independent connection of the SDP equipment.