Our team would like to thank all operators for the active participation in the Aerodata/Optimare Operators Conference 2017. The 1.5 days event with operators from nine different countries and two aircraft on static display was a great success in terms of promoting the exchange between all involved organisations. We are looking forward to the next event in 2019.
In April the Armed Forces of Malta took delivery of their third fixed wing maritime patrol aircraft (MPA) during a ceremony held at Aerodata. The ceremony was attended by His Excellency the ambassador of the Republic of Malta Albert Friggeri and the Commander of the Armed Forces of Malta Brig Jeffrey Curmi and his team.
As for the first two aircraft Aerodata has provided a turnkey solution including procurement and modification for maritime patrol of a new King Air aircraft. The aircraft has been equipped with Aerodata’s mission management system AeroMission. AeroMission integrates sensor operation, mission guidance and tactical planning support for enhanced situational awareness. The comprehensive sensor suite comprises search radar, EO/IR system, direction finder and various communication equipment including satellite voice and data link.
The aircraft already started the operation in Malta in May.
The project was procured under the Internal Security Fund (specific Actions) Program 2014 – 2020 of the European Union.
The Helicopter Flight Inspection System series of Aerodata was expanded by a small portable system, which is completely independent of any primary interfaces.
The AD-HeliFIS-0300 can work autonomously on battery for 4 hours and receives its satellite data from a quick-release, window-mountable GNSS antenna. It is suited for any type of helicopter and can be installed within a few minutes.
It contains a multi-channel GNSS receiver and an Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU).
The system is controlled by the approved Aerodata Flight Inspection Software, using the new Graphical User Interface layout on a ruggedized laptop computer. An additional Portable Cockpit Information Display (PCID) based on a tablet computer provides guidance information for procedure validation. Optionally, PAPI and Radar inspections can be performed as well.
The first portable HeliFIS-0300 was delivered to JCAB (Japan Civil Aviation Bureau) in February 2017.
In January Aerodata has been awarded by the Flight Inspection Unit of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) with a second contract for upgrading their flight inspection systems AD-AFIS-220 to a state-of-the-art AeroFIS®.
The systems installed in DO-228 and King Air 350 flight inspection aircraft, will be upgraded in India by Aerodata’s experienced engineers.
With the upgrade program of their fleet to the latest computer and software technology, AAI will not only be capable for inspection of all conventional navigation aids like ILS (incl. CAT III), VOR, DME, and NDB but also for SBAS, GBAS and all RNAV procedures.
Part of the upgrade process is furthermore the delivery of an advanced ground calibration equipment.
In October two helicopter flight Inspection systems AD-HELIFIS-200 have been delivered to our customer Balai Kalibrasi (DGCA Indonesia).
The systems are built for flight checking/validation of procedures (GPS NPA, SID/STAR), RNAV (B-RNAV, P-RNAV, RNP) as well as NDB and PAPI.
The system design was focused on using identical software as for the fixed wing version AD-AFIS-255, operated by DGCA in their flight inspection aircraft. Part of the installation into the Bell 429 helicopter is a state of the art helicopter workstation and a helicopter equipment console.
The installation will be performed at the facilities of our partner Hawker Pacific in Singapore.
With this delivery the Indonesian fleet will be enlarged to ten aircraft exclusively operated with AeroFIS®.
AeroRescue and Aerodata are promoting jointly the sale of five Dornier 328 aircraft suitable for surveillance as well as search and rescue. Aerodata has equipped these aircraft with AeroMission, its mission system and has provided these aircraft to AeroRescue, an Australian special mission aircraft operator, between October 2015 and February 2007. These aircraft have been operated under a 10 year service contract for the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA).
All five aircraft are equipped with a comprehensive suite of surveillance sensors and a mission system - AeroMission - integrating the information of all sensors and data link capabilities to disseminate the information. The aircraft are fitted with conformal observation windows and can carry search and rescue equipment of up to 1000 lbs. The use of the modified cargo door for dropping of SAR equipment provides unique dropping capabilities.
With the end of the service contract, these aircraft will be available for sale after a mission system upgrade and can be used both for surveillance and SAR tasks.
AeroRescue and Aerodata have exhibited one of the aircraft at Aerodata AG in Braunschweig in the time frame from November 1st - 3rd. Potential customers participated in demonstration flights on all 3 days. During these demonstration flights over the North Sea, the maritime surveillance capabilities of the aircraft were shown.
More details of the Dornier 328 capabilities are provided in the Newsletter.
In October a flight inspection system AeroFIS® delivered by Aerodata AG was put into operation by the Algerian Air Force. The AeroFIS® will be flexibly installed into two Beechcraft 1900D aircraft.
The scope of delivery also included a calibration and testing system, an extensive spare parts package, an office computer system for archiving and data analysis of the flight measurement data, and a RTK-GNSS surveying system for airfield surveys.
First measurement flights by the Algerian Air Force confirm the readiness of the supplied AeroFIS® to measure conventional navigation systems such as ILS (including CAT III), VOR, DME, NDB, RNAV and modern Surveillance radars as well as Russian navigation systems RSBN/PMRG.
The EASA certified autopilot coupling of the system substantially reduces pilot workload during flight inspection.
In August Aerodata has been awarded by the Stichting Nationaal Lucht- en Ruimtevaartlaboratorium, Netherlands (NLR) with a contract for upgrading their flight inspection system AD-FIS-5 to a state-of-the-art AeroFIS®.
The system will be installed by NLR into the Cessna Citation II and is capable for inspection of conventional navigation aids like ILS (incl. CAT III), VOR, DME, TACAN, and NDB.
In order to comply with the steadily increasing demand for airborne maritime surveillance services, Aerodata AG and the Brazilian company Fototerra Atividades de Aerolevantamento Ltda. recently have established a Joint Venture, Fototerra Survey SCP in Brazil. Major target of Fototerra Survey SCP is to provide airborne maritime pollution surveillance services for the private sector as well as for governmental agencies.
At the beginning of July, after nearly 18 months of intensive development and production the first fully equipped maritime surveillance aircraft, has been released to service, able to take over environmental surveillance service flights on a 24/7 basis. First evaluation flights have been performed out of Houston in the Gulf of Mexico.
Equipped with OPTIMARE´s well proven fully integrated MEDUSA Maritime Surveillance Mission System, Side-Looking Airborne Radar (SLAR), IR/UV Line Scanner, VIS Line Scanner, Microwave Radiometer and Laser Fluorosensor this aircraft represents the most complete and comprehensive solution for oil spill detection. Additional sensors allow ship detection and identification.
For more information take a look into the Newsletter.
The joint research project MEGA is supported by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy in the framework of the Federal Aeronautical Research Programme V. The research is focussed on the inspection of GNSS based CAT-III approach and taxiing guidance systems. The project implementation is done in close cooperation with the Institute of Flight Guidance of the Technische Unversität Braunschweig and lead-managed by Aerodata.
The use of GNSS based systems will lead to an increase in approach and landing capacity at highly frequented airports during difficult weather conditions. This is achieved by a reduction of Instrument Landing System (ILS) protection zones and a significantly increased positioning accuracy of taxiing guidance applications within the GAST-D (Ground Based Augmentation System Approach Service Type D) technology. GAST-D is comparable to an ILS of category III (CAT-III) and is currently being developed in the SESAR framework and by NextGen programmes. The safe operation of GAST-D installations can only be certified and ensured after conducting a successful flight inspection in terms of a commissioning.
The joint research project MEGA aims at developing a prototype flight inspection system, which is capable of calibrating a GAST-D installation. The project term ends March 31st, 2019. Thus, Aerodata will be able to deliver a GAST-D capable AeroFIS flight inspection system when the first GAST-D installations are expected to become operational.