Malaysia Airlines will be the first carrier to implement global flight tracking using SITA OnAir’s AIRCOM FlightTracker, starting this summer. The airline has already conducted extensive testing of the technology, which uses existing equipment and re-purposes air traffic control data. This ground-based software upgrade allows airlines to follow aircraft positions and identify any unexpected deviations or gaps in position reports. Because it utilises existing equipment, the solution is claimed by SITA OnAir to be highly cost effective.
SITA OnAir’s solution provides the tracking capabilities the airline needs without the requirement for new and expensive equipment. SITA OnAir has designed a solution that works using the AIRCOM Server ACARS message handling system, which the airline already has in place, so the cost and disruption are minimal.
AIRCOM FlightTracker uses multiple sources of data that guarantees tracking intervals of at least every 15 minutes for every flight. The airline also has the option to configure the system to intervals of less than 15 minutes. In addition, it enables the airline to obtain ADS-C tracking data immediately when it detects a gap in data from other sources. It can also obtain one-off position reports from the flight management computers on short-haul aircraft that do not have FANS data link avionics.