Advancing Safety Through Avionics Advancements: Terry Flaishans

by Terry Flaishans on 11/22/2019

Terry Flaishans, President, Commercial Avionics, L3Harris, delves into ADS-B and how it is changing the industry:

In 2019, the total global airline’s flights are expected to reach 39.4 million carrying 4.6 billion passengers, and this expected to increase by 3.7% annually. Additionally, we continue to see growth for unmanned aircraft systems as they are integrated into controlled airspace throughout the world.

There is a definite need for efficient and globally harmonized technologies to ensure safety and efficiency as the industry continues to expand and evolve, which requires crucial components that elevate pilot awareness are integrated into the flight deck avionics.

ADS-B is the predominant technology that provides harmonized safety and efficiency. ACSS, an L3Harris and Thales Company, is a leader in ADS-B technology and at the forefront of bringing this technology into the cockpit.

ADS-B Out transmits specific aircraft information, including the speed, position, altitude, and direction for Air Traffic Controllers.

Allowing pilots to see the same information about surrounding aircraft significantly enhances their situational awareness enabling them to taxi and fly safer and more efficiently. As leaders in communication and surveillance products, we recognized the value of ADS-B In technology early and had the first certified cockpit solution in 2007. However, at that time, much of the industry wasn’t equipped with ADS-B Out; now they are, and now is the time for airlines to leverage it.

One of the greatest advantages of ADS-B In technology is that it is one of the first avionics technologies that is an add-on application to existing TCAS equipment. In-flight applications allow precise spacing in adverse weather conditions, more direct routing resulting in fuel savings, and improvements in overall block times in & out of airports. Ground applications help reduce the likelihood of runway incursions with aircraft and other vehicles.

L3Harris is working with airlines and airport authorities globally to thoroughly understand the full benefits this technology will bring to airlines and passengers. For airlines and airports, ADS-B In means greater safety, efficiency, and higher throughput. This can help increase capacity without adding additional runways.

Similarly, we are seeing a reduction in workload of the ATC controller. With ADS-B In, the controllers will gain increased confidence because they know that the pilots have a tool that gives them precise information about the aircraft they are following.

We are living in a very exciting time in the aviation industry. Avionics technologies are moving faster than ever before, the passenger travel needs are continuing to be in high demand, and the industry is preparing for the integration of unmanned aircraft into controlled airspace. L3Harris continues to be at the forefront of avionics technology that will help shape the future.