Space-based ADS-B

The answer to the whole 406MHz ELT debate?

When we know that a recent study conducted by the Canadian Mission Control Centre for SARSAT indicated that ELTs activate in only 38% of Canadian aircraft accidents where the aircraft sustained substantial damage (http://www.tsb.gc.ca/ENG/rapports-reports/aviation/2015/a15c0130/a15c0130.asp), we know we can’t rely on this outdated technology anymore to be rescued.

If you go back on our web site and look at my January 2016 President’s Corner, I talk about space-based ADS-B being a possible technology to help replace the ELTs. I wrote: “Encouraging and using commercial services for alerting is better than requiring one specific technology that may grow outdated as technology progresses”.

After a few years of talking about this and having COPA staff put that bug in everyone’s ear whenever possible, I am extremely glad to report that a team of people from Nav Canada and Aireon has bought into this. Along with us, Nav Canada, Transport Canada and perhaps others like DND are now seriously working on the idea of using this technology to meet search and rescue requirements. The first official presentation was done at a joint meeting on June 5th in Ottawa. As this could be developed over the next few years, ADS-B equipage prices will inevitably come down and when everything is ready, replacing your ELT may simply mean putting in an ADS-B transponder for the same price.

Aviation Career and Scholarship Guide

I hope you have leafed through last month’s first annual Career and Scholarship Guide. And that you may have shared it with some younger aviators in your area. Many copies were sent to all schools and colleges across the country and we still have few thousand copies at the office should you need some. We are getting very positive feedback from many groups and we hope this will encourage the new generation of men and women to turn to aviation-related careers. A French version will be available next year.

Online Canadian Plane Trade

As you read this, it has become a reality. After so many years of strictly being in paper or pdf format, Canadian Plane Trade has now made it in a digital, online version. We want this to be the Trade-a-Plane of Canada, the go-to place for any aviation-related classifieds. We will continue to do the paper version, but the digital version will make it a lot simpler, easier and certainly increase the value of your membership.

Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame

On June 7th, I had the honour of being at the official induction of our co-founder John Bogie into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame. It was a great ceremony where I was able to witness how many people John touched and influenced, how deep COPA’s roots are in Canada’s aviation. He was a true pioneer and deserves every bit of recognition for what he has done. Rest in Peace, Mr. Bogie.