Safer Airlines – For Lesser Cost?
Six months ago, Malaysia Airline flight MH370, disappeared into the Indian Ocean and still remains unfound. This tragedy has raised countless questions: Are airlines safe? What could have caused this type of accident? Why wasn’t the plane recovered? Families are still left without closure over half of a year later. This tragic incident, among other more minor events, has led the aviation community to pioneer advancements in aircraft tracking and safety standards. Aireon, LLC has decided to take on the challenge and on September 21st, 2014 they announced their futuristic plans to ensure aviation becomes not only safer, but more efficient as well. The best part about the advancement – the service will be free and will lead to multi-million dollar savings for airlines.
Between 2015 and 2020, nearly all aircraft will be equipped with ADS-B, an automatic, satellite enabled tracking system that also aids in efficient navigation. More technical navigation, which would require no additional airline personnel, could lead to airline savings of $125 million in fuel prices alone and countless hours of flight time for passengers. “Aireon Alert”, as they have named the tracking system, will be considered a public service to the aviation community. The alert system will have direct access to emergency responders which are available to intervene at any necessary moment.
What’s the Catch?
Many have wondered, what is the catch? What upfront costs will this entail? Aieron answers: none. Airlines will not need to add or change any avionics to utilize the ADS-B. The company is already being backed by Iridium Communications, Ansps Nav Canada, Italy’s ENAV, the Irish Aviation Authority, and Denmark’s Naviair. And another big concern, what about our privacy as passengers? Aireon Alert is 100% confidential, with very limited access made available to select teams and emergency responders if necessary.
When this new technology becomes available (beginning as soon as 2015) flights will be tracked from start to finish. A competitor of Aeiron, a company called Globalstar, was able to track a 7000 mile flight for the entire length of the trip in the month of September, using the ADS-B tracking system. With multiple companies competing to be the most elite name in air traffic tracking, the future safety of air travel looks more and more promising.