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Old 11th Feb 2015, 15:34
  #11624 (permalink)  
Ian W
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida and wherever my laptop is
Posts: 1,297
Originally Posted by Niner Lima Charlie View Post
From AvWeb:
Beginning in 2017 any aircraft, GA included, with ADS-B out transmitting at 1090 MHz will be automatically tracked and the precise location of its last transmission anywhere on earth recorded. At last week's ICAO High Level Safety Conference, Aireon LLC, which is launching the first space based global air surveillance system, announced that the headquarters for its Aircraft Locating and Emergency Response Tracking (Aireon Alert) will be at the Irish Aviation Authority's North Atlantic operations center in Ballygirreen on the west coast of Ireland. Once the Iridium constellation of satellites carrying the ADS-B receivers is complete, any airline, search and rescue organization or any other group needing "last known" information on a flight can get it for free from Aireon. VP of marketing Cyriel Kronenburg told AVweb it will work for all aircraft equipped with 1090 MHz ADS-B and the mystery of Malaysian MH370, a Boeing 777 which hasn't been found since it disappeared a year ago, prompted the ALERT service.
Except that the ADS-B transmitters were switched off by whoever was in the cockpit of MH370. There were arguments about switched off/failed but the net result was they stopped Mode-S and secondary radar transponders at around the same time.

So under the Aireon/Iridium scheme everyone would now start searching the South China Sea again.

The argument about making it impossible to switch off ADS-B has also been rehearsed numerous times.

The Aireon idea is a solution to a different problem. It might have helped with AFR447. But that would also be solved by Aireon's competitor INMARSAT providing free tracking for ADS-C equipped aircraft.

The problem of what to do when someone in the cockpit (crew or savvy hijacker) decides to close down all on board active tracking systems has yet to be solved.
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