Seattle, WA – Civil Air Patrol and uAvionix Corporation have successfully partnered to deploy a DO-260B compliant dual-band ADS-B receiver network to compliment FAA sensor data with low altitude aircraft positions in support of the National Radar Analysis Team (NRAT) mission to shorten the crash to rescue time in Search & Rescue.
Through the leadership of Virginia Wing (VAWG), Volunteers throughout Civil Air Patrol Squadrons in Virginia have assisted uAvionix in locating suitable receiver sites and supported the installation of small, low-weight FlightStation ADS-B receivers at various airports in the State. The dual mode (1090Mhz and 978Mhz) FlightStations receive transponder data from aircraft, which is centrally received and transmitted to the NRAT server at Maxwell Air Force Base, combined with FAA sensor data.
NRAT supports the CAP Emergency Services mission using FAA data and advanced technologies. The Air Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) activates the team when there is a report of a possible missing aircraft or crash. Once the unit is activated, analysis and actionable data can be provided in minutes to an Incident Commander instead of days or hours before NRAT was created, which Incident Commanders and air crews use to conduct their search.
The FlightLine roll-out consists of several ATC grade ADS-B receivers with overlapping coverage, allowing for validation of transmitted ADS-B data and pinpoint multilaterated positions. Traditional ADS-B and radar concentrate mostly on airports and higher altitudes supporting Air Traffic Control. Most other available data sources largely exclude coverage for 978Mhz transponders, typically used by General Aviation aircraft. Virginia is the first State in the US to have 100% coverage down to 500 ft of altitude, rapidly expanding to other states.
“NRAT has been working several years to test small ADSB receivers to place at locations with limited FAA coverage,” said Lt Col Mark Young, Commander of NRAT. “The availability of these new receivers, built to RTCA aviation certification standards, and its subsequent real-time data from FlightLine data available to CAP is a significant advancement for NRAT. Real-time data at lower altitudes significantly improves NRAT’s ability to provide a fast and accurate location of missing aircraft that can be used to support the Emergency Services Search & Rescue mission and will result in lives saved.”
“uAvionix is proud to work together with CAP to improve low altitude data availability for this important public service,” said Christian Ramsey, Managing Director of uAvionix. “The introduction of ADS-B has resulted in a significant improvement of General Aviation safety, expanding on the FAA coverage at lower altitude and for UAT transponders typically carried by General Aviation will further enhance the tools used in the safety of life activities such as CAP‘s Emergency Services mission.”
Since its original introduction in Virginia, significant expansion has occurred to other states. The National Radar Analysis Team calls on all Civil Air Patrol Squadrons throughout the US to volunteer to host and install additional receivers where additional coverage is needed. NRAT will prioritize areas where existing coverage is weak. For more information and to register your squadron for a FlightStation unit, visit www.uavionix.com/adsb4nrat/.
uAvionix was founded to provide solutions that support the safe and efficient integration of Crewed and Uncrewed Aircraft into National Airspace Systems (NAS). Offering TSO-certified and uncertified avionics for General Aviation (GA), Airports, and the UAS markets. uAvionix is a global leader in developing and producing the lowest size, weight and power (SWaP) avionics for command, navigation, and surveillance. To learn more about uAvionix manned and unmanned products, please visit: www.uAvionix.com
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