" ITREALMS: WRC15 allots frequency to track flights

Thursday, November 12, 2015

WRC15 allots frequency to track flights

The 2015 World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC15) in Geneva has allotted the frequency band 1087.7-1092.3 MHz to aeronautical mobile-satellite service (Earth-to-space), for global flight tracking in civil aviation ITRealms reports.

 The band is meant for reception by space stations of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) emissions from aircraft transmitters. The frequency band is currently being utilized for the transmission of ADS-B signals from aircraft to terrestrial stations within line-of-sight. This extends ADS-B signals beyond line-of-sight to facilitate reporting the position of aircraft equipped with ADS-B anywhere in the world, including oceanic, polar and other remote areas ITRealms gathered.

The ITU Secretary-General, Houlin Zhao said, “In reaching this agreement at WRC-15, ITU has responded in record time to the expectations of the global community on the major issue concerning global flight tracking. ITU will continue to make every effort to improve flight tracking for civil aviation.”

“The allocation of frequencies for reception of ADS-B signals from aircraft by space stations will enable real-time tracking of aircraft anywhere in the world,” said the Director of the ITU Radiocommunication Bureau, François Rancy, “We will continue to work with ICAO and other international organizations to enhance safety in the skies.”
WRC-15 recognized that as the standards and recommended practices (SARP) for systems enabling position determination and tracking of aircraft are developed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the performance criteria for satellite reception of ADS-B signals will also need to be addressed by ICAO.

This agreement, ITRealms learnt, follows the disappearance and tragic loss of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 in March 2014 with 239 people on board, which spurred worldwide discussions on global flight tracking and the need for coordinated action by ITU and other relevant organizations.

In its special meeting on global flight tracking, which took place in Montréal, May 12 to 13, 2014, ICAO encouraged ITU to take urgent action to provide the necessary spectrum allocations for satellites to support emerging aviation needs. In October 2014, the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference meeting in Busan, Republic of Korea, instructed WRC-15 to consider global flight tracking in its agenda, ITRealms reports also.

Cyriacus Nnaji, GEE
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