Rockwell Collins introduces ARINC MultiLink flight tracking

A Boeing 787 Dreamliner.Rockwell Collins has unveiled its ARINC MultiLink flight tracking service, offering comprehensive and cost-effective global flight tracking for airlines.

The service will be available this spring.

ARINC MultiLink brings together multiple data sources to reliably report the location of an aircraft anywhere in the world, including:

  • ADS-C (including Inmarsat and Iridium)
  • High-frequency data link (HFDL) performance data
  • ADS-B
  • US Aircraft Situation Display to Industry (ASDI) radar data
  • EUROCONTROL position information, and
  • Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) position reports.

Additionally, ARINC MultiLink has been developed with the ability to incorporate future third-party data sources that may include position data.

Rockwell Collins says it uses a proprietary algorithm to merge the data sources to provide more accurate and higher fidelity position reporting.

In addition, the use of multiple sources means an aircraft’s position can be reported more frequently. The service can also notify airlines when an aircraft stops reporting positional data unexpectedly or when the aircraft has deviated from its expected path.

Jeff Standerski, senior vice president, Information Management Services for Rockwell Collins, said: “In today’s global aviation environment, no single source of data is sufficient to track aircraft globally.

“By merging multiple data sources, many of which airlines already receive, we can automatically select the right combination of data feeds to allow airlines to pinpoint an aircraft’s location anywhere in the world, in the most economical way.”

A key and differentiating element of ARINC MultiLink is its ability to incorporate HFDL network performance data, made possible by Rockwell Collins’ global air/ground data link network.

Aircraft equipped with HFDL automatically deliver network performance data directly to Rockwell Collins. These data can be used in conjunction with other sources to provide highly accurate and cost-effective aircraft tracking everywhere around the globe.

Tim Ryan, director, GLOBALink programs and services management, said: “Using the unique propagation characteristics of HFDL enables ARINC MultiLink to communicate with properly-equipped aircraft operating in remote regions and over the oceans

“Our ability to merge HFDL network performance data with multiple data sources results in a more robust and truly global aircraft tracking capability.”

Ryan explained that using multiple data sources together allows for better and more accurate tracking. Out-of-tolerance data such as altitude, airspeed or position, can all be flagged.

Rockwell Collins also confirmed that the system would also be compatible with Inmarsat’s upcoming Global Xpress Ka-band satellite system.

ARINC MultiLink can be customised to meet an airline’s unique needs while still aligning with industry recommendations. Rockwell Collins says it will work with carriers to help selectively augment the fidelity and reliability of their standard data feed as needed to generate additional data for a selected aircraft or geographic region.

MultiLink will be offered as an add-on to Rockwell Collins’ ARINC OpCenter/WebASD or Hermes/Skyview products, which are currently used by 125 airlines around the world, or as a data feed that can be streamed to a carrier’s own situational display solution.

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