Cobham debuts business jet FANS upgrade

Cobham has launched a communications upgrade option that delivers all the benefits of Inmarsat’s SB-S technology platform and FANS 1/A compliance to business jets at a price point well below historical solutions.
Enabled by the development of an STC on a Chicago Jet Group (CJG)-owned Falcon 900 aircraft, this joint Cobham and CJG initiative brings a solution to the market that will allow operators to fly preferred FANS routes with CPDLC and ADS-C functionality, while also servicing passengers with high speed data services, all via a single channel of SwiftBroadband.
This will be accomplished by combining Cobham’s Next Gen AVIATOR 300D satcom system with partner Avionica’s avWiFi intelligent router. The revised STC will cover the Falcon 900 B/C/EX series with the potential for development on other airframes.
By providing direct satellite data link communication between the pilot and air traffic control, operators can fly the most direct routes in the years ahead and bring critical safety, navigational and performance data directly into the cockpit to reduce pilot workload, increase efficiency and improve overall operational safety.
The complete segregation of safety and non-safety related voice and data connectivity ensures that international business travellers in the cabin will have access to connectivity for voice calls and internet.
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Scott Beutel, regional director, Satcom Aero, Cobham, said: “As the only SB-S approved system currently flying, our AVIATOR satcom products are already allowing airlines to operate FANS routes over SwiftBroadband, so it’s exciting to bring this technology to the business jet market. Like the airlines, business jet owners are embracing the concept of a fully connected flight deck as it will provide them with a new level of improved operations which will translate into an improved financial bottom line.
“There is a compelling advantage to upgrading communications equipment on board your aircraft, so we are pleased to work with our partners CJG and Avionica to enable an easy and cost-effective solution that ensures our Next Gen AVIATOR 300D and 350D systems are available to more customers.”
Mike Mitera, president of Chicago Jet Group whose Falcon 900B/C/EX series (below) will be certified for the installation of Cobham’s AVIATOR 300D, added: “When Cobham approached us about the AVIATOR 300D and Avionica avWiFi package, we were very excited to work with them and develop an STC to bring this cost-effective cockpit and cabin connectivity solution to our customer base.
“Chicago Jet Group has been leading the way in researching FANS solutions and securing approvals for multiple retrofit FANS STC’s so that we can equip operators to meet global navigation mandates. In addition to supporting FANS capability, this innovative solution will also provide voice and data connectivity to the cabin enabling passengers to stay connected globally during all phases of flight.”
With its fuselage-mounted intermediate gain antenna, the AVIATOR 300D provides a connectivity option to operators at a price point well below historical solutions and offers more connectivity flexibility than other systems. In addition, the Cobham 350D system, type certified with antennas including Cobham’s HGA-6000 series and HGA-7001, or Honeywell’s AMT-50 and AMT-700, is available for customers requiring higher bandwidth.
The avWiFi, from leading aircraft data collection and data transmission manufacturer Avionica, is the smallest and lightest product on the market available to support such data segregation while also providing WiFi.
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