Wings Magazine

UTC Aerospace, SITA launch new electronic flight bag solution

Geneva, Sui. - SITA OnAir and UTC Aerospace Systems have launched AIRCOM Connect, the new Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) and Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) software solution. Two airlines will deploy the solution this summer.

April 20, 2015  By SITA

AIRCOM Connect is a standard plug and play offering, meaning EFB applications can now access ACARS narrowband connectivity for all phases of a flight. This new messaging capability means airlines experience the many benefits of ubiquitous ACARS, including:

  • Aeronautical Operational Control (AOC) messaging, for example to initiate performance calculation requests to be performed by the ground systems, with the result being displayed on the flight deck devices
  • Enhanced route optimization and reduced detours thanks to real-time weather updates – on the ground and in the air – sent direct to the EFB tablets
  • Free text messaging between dispatchers, maintenance engineering and flight crews, enabling effective defect troubleshooting during flights
  • Downloading automated reports, such as exceedance and cruise reports
  • Dispatch data reports, including:
  • Dispatchers up-linking automated messages that contain updated METAR and TAF information
  • Flight crew requesting ramp service requirements during approach to destination airport
  • SITA OnAir partnered with UTC Aerospace Systems and deployed the software solution on all of the UTC Aerospace Systems EFB hardware platforms. This also includes its latest tablet-interface device (TIM) which connects to and leverages the UTC Aerospace Systems Aircraft Interface Device (AID) features.

Ian Dawkins, CEO of SITA OnAir said: “We have a history of collaborating with UTC Aerospace Systems to bring our customers innovative solutions. By combining the UTC Aerospace Systems hardware with the AIRCOM Connect software, we can offer our customers the exact functionality they desire for their EFB solutions. Increasingly, those EFB solutions are tablet based.”

Jim Tuitt, manager of business development for aircraft data management at UTC Aerospace Systems said “The UTC Aerospace Systems tablet EFB, in combination with the SITA OnAir AIRCOM Connect software, enables an airline to maximize the benefits of paperless operations. We look forward to applying our extensive experiences together in developing and supporting EFB systems worldwide and to help airlines implement value added solutions.”

AIRCOM Connect gives airlines the choice of two messaging service options. The first is standard ACARS, which while constrained by message size limitations is compatible with any ACARS ground host processors and with most ACARS routers.


The second option is AEEC 841 Media Independent Aircraft Messaging (MIAM) over ACARS.  This overcomes the ACARS size limitations, enabling third party applications to transmit large messages over any networks, including VHF, VDL Mode 2, Iridium and Inmarsat.

UTC Aerospace Systems has received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) approval for AIRCOM®Connect to be used on their EFB hardware platforms on a range of commercial aircraft types.


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