TheÂ Federal Aviation Administration has completed work to install new equipment and update aircraft tracking systems at air traffic facilities as part of the agency’s Next Generation Air Transportation System initiative.
The Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast radio network is operational at 100 out of 230 air traffic facilities across the U.S. and the agency is aiming for full operational status by 2019, FAA said Monday.
“This upgrade is an important step in laying the foundation for the NextGen system, which provides controllers a much more precise view of the airspace, gives pilots much more awareness and information,” Transportation Secretary Anthony FoxxÂ said.
The satellite-basedÂ ADS-B uses GPS technology to track aircraft equippedÂ with ADS-B Out transpondersÂ that are built to broadcast a plane’s location.
Installation ofÂ ADS-B Out on aircraft is mandated for completionÂ by Jan. 1, 2020, while the non-mandatedÂ ADS-B In is intended to provide location data to pilots in relation to other aircraft, bad weather, terrain and restricted airspace.
ExelisÂ has installed 634 ground stations across the country for the FAA.