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Aireon Launches Global Coalition for Space-Based VHF Aviation Communication
Aireon is taking concrete steps towards this vision by applying for a license to operate within the newly approved spectrum. Furthermore, the coalition is actively engaging with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to define the technical and operational standards necessary for the implementation of space-based VHF systems.
Aireon Launches Global Coalition for Space-Based VHF Aviation Communication
by Clarence Oxford
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Mar 12, 2024

Aireon is at the forefront of aviation innovation with the establishment of the Aireon Space-Based VHF Coalition, a collaborative initiative aimed at developing space-based VHF voice and data communication services for the aviation sector. This marks a significant leap towards enhancing global air traffic safety and efficiency.

The coalition sees the partnership of industry giants including Iridium, NAV CANADA, NATS, AirNav Ireland, ENAV, and Naviair with Aireon, and is in talks with more partners set to join. This initiative follows the groundbreaking success of Aireon's space-based ADS-B surveillance, which revolutionized the monitoring of over 50% of the world's airspace, significantly boosting safety and operational efficiency, especially in areas with sparse connectivity.

The promise of space-based VHF communications is to bring similar advancements, potentially transforming aviation by facilitating more precise aircraft tracking and routing, thus improving safety, efficiency, and environmental sustainability. The green light from the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in December for the allocation of new radio frequencies for aeronautical use is a pivotal step towards realizing space-based VHF communications.

Aireon is taking concrete steps towards this vision by applying for a license to operate within the newly approved spectrum. Furthermore, the coalition is actively engaging with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to define the technical and operational standards necessary for the implementation of space-based VHF systems.

Don Thoma, CEO of Aireon, emphasizes the coalition's unique position to lead this venture, drawing on its unmatched experience in deploying the world's only certified space-based ADS-B surveillance system. "With over 12 years of operational excellence in space-based surveillance, Aireon is uniquely equipped to pioneer space-based VHF communications, ensuring the highest standards of safety and efficiency in aviation," stated Thoma.

Aireon, recognized for setting the industry benchmark with its space-based ADS-B system, serves about 50 percent of global airspace. The company's client base spans over 40 countries and includes more than 20 Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs).

Echoing the sentiment of dedication and expertise, Thoma added, "Aireon is committed to extending its legacy of innovation in space-based services to the realm of VHF communications, ensuring that the aviation community benefits from unparalleled safety and operational efficiency."

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