Inmarsat awaits regulatory standards for flight-data streaming

Inmarsat has reported it is awaiting regulatory details on the scope of flight-data streaming on its new broadband service, the company said.

The company said it believes its new broadband service will be able to support such applications.

The satellite communications company has been validating the SwiftBroadband-Safety service in trials undertaken by Hawaiian Airlines on Boeing 767-300s, using the capability for ACARS transmissions and updating electronic flightbag information.

Hawaiian primarily operates oceanic services, given the location of its hub, which means satcom is a more effective option for data communications. The testing has involved controller-pilot datalink and satellite-based navigation applications.

Inmarsat has been working toward a similar agreement with Boeing. Provision of such capabilities on a large proportion of the air transport fleet would underpin a shift toward introducing flight-data streaming, and reduce the problems associated with locating and retrieving recorders lost in hostile environments.