The In’s and Out’s of ADS-B

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Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B)

New FAA Requirement for All Aircraft

A regular contributor to Fortune wrote an article on the ADS-B installation with the above headline. The introductory sentence reads as follows:

In just a few months, the FAA will institute a new requirement for all aircraft allowed to ply the skies. Every plane must have a technology, called ADS-B, that automatically communicates flight data from aircraft to air traffic controllers.

FAA Deputy Administrator Dan Elwell adsbThe deadline is actually December 31, 2019, approximately 16 months away. FAA Deputy Administrator Dan Elwell recently reaffirmed that date by stating:

“You have heard my predecessors say this before, and I will continue to communicate this important message: The ADS-B OUT ut equipage mandate will not change. The December 31, 2019 date is firm.”

GA industry leaders GAMA and AOPA agree with the deadline. “We are supportive of ADS-B equipage and encourage pilots to do so to meet the 2020 mandate,” AOPA announced. “The 2020 mandate remains in place, and GAMA supports it,” GAMA CEO Pete Bunce further stated, “We have confirmed across the full spectrum of general aviation associations that our industry strongly supports air traffic control modernization to include having the ADS-B OUT mandate stand firm. We look forward to working with the deputy administrator to facilitate accelerated equipage rates for fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft as the mandate deadline approaches.”

faa equip adsb requirements


A very comprehensive library on the ADS-B issue is provided by NBAA:

Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B)

Updated September 16, 2016


June 13, 2017
It Pays to Plan Ahead for ADS-B Equipage

June 2, 2017
Coordinating ADS-B Installation with Planned Maintenance Reduces Aircraft Downtime

Sept. 16, 2016
ADS-B Rebate Now Available to Owners of Eligible Aircraft

August 24, 2016
Verify Your ADS-B Performance with Free FAA Web Tool

September 2, 2015
FAA Website Answers Questions about NextGen, ADS-B

January 8, 2015
NBAA Advocacy Leads to Operational Flexibility in Asia-Pacific Region

November 24, 2014
NBAA’s Steve Brown Represents Members at NextGen Planning Meetings

November 24, 2014
NBAA Continues Work on ADS-B Mandate (Podcast)

November 14, 2014
NBAA Will Again Represent Members on ADS-B Planning at Working Group

October 30, 2014
NBAA Airs Member Concerns at FAA’s ADS-B “Call to Action” Summit

October 9, 2014
NBAA, Other Industry Groups to Discuss ADS-B Equipage Challenges

May 12, 2014
FAA Cuts Paperwork for ADS-B Approvals

January 9, 2012
FAA Issues AC 90-114 on ADS-B (180 KB, PDF)

November 28, 2011
NBAA-Led Committee Against Requiring ADS-B ‘In’


implementing adsb airplanesAutomatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), a satellite-based aircraft monitoring system, will replace the cornerstone technology for monitoring aircraft in the skies and on the ground in the continuing transformation to a Next Generation (“NextGen”) aviation system.

ADS-B uses the aircraft’s global positioning system (GPS) for position information and transmits its position along with several other data fields including aircraft type, speed, flight number, and whether the aircraft is turning, climbing or descending, which are not transmitted by today’s radar technology. This information is sent to air traffic control (ATC), as well as other aircraft. ADS-B updates an aircraft’s position to ATC once per second, while radar updates ATC once every 3 to 12 seconds. Aircraft equipped with ADS-B that transmit these data field have what is called ADS-B Out.

An aircraft has the next level of equipage, called ADS-B In, when the aircraft not only sends the ADS-B Out data, but will also receive the data sent from other aircraft and ATC. This allows the pilot to see heading, altitude, speed, aircraft category, call sign, and distance on other aircraft that are ADS-B Out equipped. The aircraft will also be able to access to ATC data of position reports from secondary surveillance sources for non-ADS-B equipped aircraft.

With the appropriate displays, an aircraft can use the ADS-B In data to provide a graphical representation of other traffic around you. This is called Traffic Information Service-Broadcast (TIS-B). While Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) currently provides this information, TIS-B will give more information, making the TCAS display more accurate. TCAS will continue to detect and issue Traffic Alerts and Resolution Advisories that ADS-B will not.

In addition to TIS-B data, ADS-B In equipped aircraft can also receive Flight Information Service-Broadcast (FIS-B) data which allows the flight crew to see and read information such as METARs, TAFs, and NEXRAD radar. All of these are to be provided free without a subscription requirement.

In the U.S., ADS-B equipment can use either 1090 MHz Extended Squitters (1090ES) or Universal Access Transceivers (UAT) at 978 MHz. The UAT may be less expensive, but when operating at or above FL240, 1090ES will be mandatory. Outside of the U.S., and for the near future, Air Navigation Service Providers are planning to use 1090ES and not UAT, so operators should factor that into equipment purchasing decisions.

Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Contract (ADS-C) is similar to ADS-B, but when the aircraft logs on to the Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP) the aircraft sets up a “Contract” with ATC. ADS-C is a Datalink system used primarily for making position reports.The Datalink system also allows operators to request and receive their oceanic clearances. However, ADS-C is separate from Controller/Pilot Data Link (CPDLC). While ADS-C can function CPDLC, CPDLC cannot function without ADS-C. These two technologies combined provide the basis for FANS compatability.

U.S. ADS-B Implementation

On October 5, 2007, the FAA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) seeking comments on proposed avionics equipment and performance requirements for aircraft in specified airspace. An ADS-B Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC), co-chaired by NBAA, followed shortly after. The ARC was established by the FAA Administrator under FAA Order 1110.147 to provide a forum for the U.S. aviation community to discuss and review the NPRM for ADS-B, formulate recommendations on presenting and structuring an ADS-B mandate and consider additional actions that will be necessary to implement those recommendations. Review the full ARC report.

On May 27, 2010, the FAA published new rules (contained in 14 CFR §92.225 and §91.227) mandating airspace and avionics performance requirements after January 1, 2020. This mandate allows operators approximately 10 years to ensure that their aircraft are properly equipped.

The new rules will require operators to have ADS-B Out avionics in place when operating in:

Class A, B, and C airspace

All airspace at and above 10,000 feet MSL (mean sea level) over the 48 contiguous United States and the District of Columbia

Within 30 nautical miles of airports listed in 14 CFR §91.225, from the surface up to 10,000 feet MSL

Class E airspace over the Gulf of Mexico from the coastline of the United States out to 12 nautical miles, at and above 3,000 feet MSL.

FAA Advisory Circular 90-114 contains guidance on compliance with the new rules including an overview of the ADS-B system, general operating procedures, and performance requirements.

To view upcoming ADS-B mandates in other countries around the world, visit NBAA’s Communication, Navigation and Surveillance Timeline.

Operator Approval for ADS-B

While no specific approval is required for operations over the U.S., other countries around the world are requiring approval from operators’ civil aviation authority. The FAA and NBAA are working to minimize the effects of these requirements.

Approvals for operations outside the U.S. can be obtained through OpSpec/MSpec/LOA A153 ADS-B Out Operations Outside of U.S.-Designated Airspace. Be sure to check with a ground handling service provider for trips outside the U.S. to determine if ADS-B is required to be installed or approved.


FAA Notice 8900.76 OPSPEC/MSPEC/LOA A353 – ADS-B Out Operations in the Hudson Bay Area, Canada

EASA AMC 20-24 Certification Considerations for the Enhanced ATS in Non-Radar Areas using ADS-B Surveillance (ADS-B-NRA) Application via 1090 MHZ Extended Squitter (188 KB, PDF)

EASA Decision 2008/004/R (25 KB, PDF)

Nav Canada Aeronautical Information Circular 18/07 Introduction of Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) Airspace in the Vicinity of Hudson Bay(238 KB, PDF)

Nav Canada ADS-B Implementation in Hudson Bay Region Operator Equipage Survey

Nav Canada Hudson Bay ADS-B Out Avionics Requirements (146 KB, PDF)

Nav Canada Presentation on Canadian Implementation of ADS-B Out by Jeff Cochrane

FAA ADS-B Applications Presentation by Bruce DeCleene (730 KB, PDF)

FAA Takes Step Towards Implementing ADS-B for Future Surveillance in U.S. (407 KB, PDF)


Fortune failed to mention the FAA rebate program:

General Aviation ADS-B Rebate Program

general aviation adsb rebate programThe FAA is offering a $500 rebate to help owners of less-expensive general aviation aircraft equip now with the required avionics. Starting January 1, 2020, you must be equipped with ADS-B Out to fly in most controlled airspace. Federal Regulations 14 CFR 91.225 and 14 CFR 91.227 contain the details. The program will run for one year from September 19, 2016 or until all 20,000 rebates have been claimed.

Are you eligible for a rebate?

Eligible aircraft: Defined as U.S.-registered, fixed-wing, single-engine piston aircraft whose operation requires an onboard pilot, first registered before Jan 1, 2016.

Eligible equipment: Avionics that are certified to FAA Technical Standard Orders and meet the program rules (software upgrades of existing equipment are not eligible). Rebates are not available for aircraft already equipped with rule compliant ADS-B or for aircraft the FAA has previously paid or committed to pay for upgrade(s) to meet the ADS-B mandate.

Where to Fly: To receive the rebate, eligible Aircraft must be flown in rule airspace, which is the airspace defined in 14 CFR §91.225 for at least 30 minutes, with at least 10 aggregate minutes of maneuvering flight (Part 23 flight maneuvers as described in AC 20-165B sections Exception: In Alaska, Guam, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, flight of an Eligible Aircraft above 10,000 feet MSL and within FAA ADS-B coverage will qualify as meeting the airspace requirements for the Rebate program. Learn more about rule airspace.


The FAA has also provided a lot of guidance on the installation:

As to whether aircraft without the ADS-B equipment will be grounded, the FAA explains what airspace requires a transponder and where a plane without the upgrade may fly.

adsb class e airspace


ads-b out equipped

Equip ADS-B


ADS-B TIS-B FIS-B Problem Report Installing ADS-B


Learn what you need to put on your aircraft to comply with the ADS-B rule, read field approval guidance and make sure you prevent common installation errors. The Installation Approval for ADS-B OUT Systems memo explains the FAA’s policy regarding installation of ADS-B Out systems into civil aircraft.

ADS-B Out Equipped?

Click here to find out if your equipment is working properly.

ADS-B / TIS-B / FIS-B Problem Report

Have a TIS-B, FIS-B, or ADS-B problem to report? Email us and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

ads-b resources Resources


ads-b questions



Q: Will ADS-B Out be required where I fly?

A: Take a look at the airspace around your home airport

Starting January 1, 2020, you must be equipped with ADS-B Out to fly in most controlled airspace.

Download the Equip ADS-B Google Earth map to look at the location of ADS-B rule airspace at your home base and where you fly. Pan and zoom to different locations and turn on the various capabilities the map includes:

  • 3-dimensional depictions of rule airspace, airports, and temporary flight restrictions in real time
  • Overlays of ADS-B surveillance coverage — airspace where ATC can see aircraft transmitting ADS-B Out information at altitudes of 500′, 1,500′, 3,000′, 5,000′ and 10,000′ AGL
  • Non-radar airspace where aircraft transmitting ADS-B can be seen by ATC


More #FAA information:
faa brent elliot adsb installation


More from Fortune:

While passenger airlines have moved to upgrade their jetliners on time, operators of business jets have proved particularly slow to bring their aircraft up to spec. Government research shop MITRE estimates that out of 26,700 business jets in the U.S., 20,731 still needed to be equipped as of March 2017. “The industry should be doing double what it’s doing now, per day,” says Mark Francetic, regional avionics sales manager for Duncan Aviation, one of the handful of companies equipped to perform ADS-B installs. “Right now if we continue on our path, we’re looking at meeting about 50 percent of airplanes.”

That estimate could prove optimistic. While hard data on installs is scarce, industry sources estimate that avionics shops nationwide average anywhere from 75 to 160 installs per month. Even at the high end, that would leave some 15,000 aircraft grounded on the first day of 2020. And even if business fliers rushed to add the technology closer to the deadline, they’re likely to run into delays, since the number of aviation shops that can install it are limited.

Grounding thousands of aircraft could temporarily bring the business aviation industry—which employs 1.2 million people and contributes $150 billion to U.S. economic output—to a screeching halt, but there’s little chance the FAA will extend the deadline, industry sources say.


That’s all valid, but there is still time for compliance.


A Whole Lot of Corporate Planes Could Soon Be Grounded
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