Wi-SKY Inflight, Inc.: Wi-SKY Inflight Introduces Aircraft Safety Initiative Making the Search for Black Boxes Obsolete

Dépèche transmise le 16 novembre 2009 par Business Wire

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Wi-SKY Inflight today introduced improved flight safety through real-time Black Box monitoring that is achievable for the first time through its exclusive 100 megabit-per-second wireless data transfer - making possible the early detection and cockpit coaching for aircraft performance problems while still in flight.

The complete aircraft avionics data stored on the Flight Data Recorder (FDR or Black Box) is too voluminous to display on the cockpit instrument panel, and too large to transmit to the ground with current communication systems.

The FDR monitors 88 parameters of aircraft performance from as many as 1,100 sensors and can accumulate as much as four gigabytes of data per flight. Current cellular or satellite technology can only transmit between 1 and 3 Mbps, which makes a real-time download of the total aircraft avionics data impossible during flight and excessively slow after the flight. Therefore pilots must now rely upon extracted highlights of the Black Box information.

'At today's data rates, it would take up to six hours to transmit four gigabytes of data from each one-hour flight,' explains Michael Leabman, CTO of Wi-SKY Inflight. 'In contrast, Wi-SKY can transmit an entire four gigabyte file in less than 13 minutes. A real-time transfer rate of at least nine Mbps is necessary to download a file this large during flight.'

The Wi-SKY air-to-ground data link can transmit 100 Mbps to each aircraft, which is more data than a satellite transmits to an entire continent - 80 Mbps to share among hundreds of customers. 'Our 100 Mbps system is like giving each plane a dedicated satellite to deliver its data,' notes Leabman.

After an aircraft accident, when the complete avionics information in the Black Box is examined, the cause of some crashes is determined to be aircraft conditions unknown to the pilots during the last stages of the flight.

'It's unfortunate that airlines have had to wait to recover the Black Box after a crash to find out everything that the aircraft avionics data files were reporting about flight performance but now Wi-SKY's technology will change all of that,' explained Grant Sharp, CEO of Wi-SKY Inflight. 'By monitoring and analyzing the complete FDR data files during the flight, we can discover performance issues and enable ground-based expert engineers and pilots to coach the cockpit crew during an emergency.'

Wi-SKY Inflight has developed an air-to-ground connection with airborne aircraft that will deliver 100 megabits of data per second (Mbps) -- fifty times faster than today's technology. Wi-SKY Inflight's technology makes them the first to offer real-time continuous data transfer of the complete avionics data file. Once the total flight data package is transmitted real-time to ground-based mainframe computers, analysis can be performed that was never before possible.

'Continuous live monitoring of fuel tank sensors, reading hydraulic system sensors at every critical point throughout the aircraft, measuring aircraft stress factors, tracking multiple airspeed indicators, monitoring complete engine trend and other key data will enable pilots to validate their instrument readings,' Sharp emphasizes. 'When problems are detected, ground based personnel at the airline operations monitoring center can be immediately summoned to help the pilots deal with an emergency situation. This can help avoid cockpit confusion that is the leading cause of commercial aviation deaths.'

Wi-SKY's intent is to offer dozens of additional real-time flight performance reports and analysis that will streamline airline operations and generate significant cost savings.

When asked how airlines are responding to this new improved safety proposition that will be available by early 2010, Sharp replies, 'Some are more interested than others. And those that have validated our technology with their due diligence process have cumbersome decision-making processes. We are optimistic that our real-time, total-data avionics monitoring will be on three or four major airlines by the end of next year.'

Wi-SKY Inflight is engaged in deploying ground stations throughout North America and Europe to support the first phases of their air-to-ground network. Base stations are needed every 200 miles, which is about 125 to 150 stations in both North America and Europe. These facilities are relatively inexpensive and easy to deploy.

Wi-SKY Inflight Inc. is targeting global customers from its Atlanta, Georgia, USA headquarters. To accommodate its plans to launch the data link service first in Europe, the company's stock is listed on the Frankfurt, Berlin and Xetra Exchanges.

About Wi-SKY Inflight, Inc.

Wi-SKY's mission is to provide superior connectivity with aircraft in flight. The company plans to leverage its proprietary radio to create a worldwide data link between aircraft and the ground, enabling all types of aircraft to be safer, more operationally efficient and offer vastly greater connectivity to the passengers. Further details about the company and results of the recent demonstration are found on the company's website, www.wi-skyinflight.com or contact Dan Katz, VP for media relations: [email protected] or +1 404-353-0710.

Business Wire

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