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Universal Avionics’ WAAS-FMS flies LPV approach in Canada

March 25, 2008, Tucson, AZ – First Air has successfully conducted LPV approach operations in Canada with the Universal Avionics’ Wide Area Augmentation System – Flight Management System (WAAS-FMS).


March 25, 2008
By Carey Fredericks

March 25, 2008, Tucson, AZ– Universal Avionics Systems Corporation is pleased to announce that Canadian airline First Air has successfully conducted LPV approach operations in Canada with the Universal Avionics’ Wide Area Augmentation System – Flight Management System (WAAS-FMS). Transport Canada approved the use of WAAS in Canadian airspace (CWAAS) on October 27, 2005. Coverage was just recently made available with the launching of four Canadian ground reference stations in support of WAAS operations in Canada.

The Localizer Performance with Vertical (LPV) guidance approach was conducted the first week of March at the Region of Waterloo International Airport (CYKF) in Ontario, Canada on a Boeing 737-200 aircraft equipped with dual UNS-1Fw FMSs. First Air operates a mixed fleet of cargo and passenger aircraft, including the B-737 200 series. The airline is Universal’s first commercial airline transport customer for the SBAS-capable WAAS-FMS, which is installed throughout First Air’s fleet of 737s, 727s and ATRs. First Air’s accomplishment of LPV approach operations in Canadian airspace provides unprecedented approach capabilities for the airline.

Localizer Performance with Vertical (LPV) guidance approaches allows operators to fly to minima as low as 200 ft with ∏-mile visibility – which require avionics systems that provide highly precise position data. The Universal WAAS-FMS uses GPS altitude data obtained from its internal GPS/WAAS receiver to provide the lateral and vertical guidance required by LPV approaches. There is a worldwide initiative to incorporate these highly accurate approach procedures at airports because it provides the most precise approach capabilities available without the purchase, installation or maintenance of ground-based navigation equipment at the airport. It also boosts airport capacity by increasing maximum capacity on intersecting runways.

The new Canadian ground reference stations are located in Goosebay, Gander, Winnipeg, and Iqualuit. In addition to extending WAAS coverage to users throughout large portions of Canada, this expansion also benefits U.S. WAAS operators along the fringe of the U.S. / Canadian border. The concurrent launch of five new ground reference stations in Mexico provides seamless WAAS coverage throughout North America.

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