The GDC Group says it is progressing the development of a number of Supplemental Type Certificates (STCs) for the installation of Honeywell’s Ka-Band JetWave hardware on different Boeing and Airbus aircraft.
JetWave is the unique equipment that enables Inmarsat’s new Ka-band GX Aviation inflight connectivity solution.
Speaking at the Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) show in Dubai, Mohammed Alzeer, General Partner, GDC Technics, said: “In November 2014 we signed an agreement with Honeywell to develop STCs for the installation of the latest technology Ka-band capabilities on both Airbus and Boeing platforms.
“We are now well on our way to fulfil our commitment to aircraft owners and to Honeywell.”
GDC is using its in-house engineering, manufacturing, installation and certifications capabilities to complete the work, while the engineering and certifications are being carried out by GDC Engineering in Munich Germany.
The installation, final ground and flight tests will be carried by GDC Technics in Fort Worth, Texas.
The first FAA/EASA STCs will be finalised during the 1st quarter of 2017 and aircraft types involved include Boeing Business Jet, Airbus Corporate Jet and commercial configurations.
The first batch of JetWave STCs will cover the Boeing B747-300/400, Boeing 777-200/300, Boeing B737-600/700/900 (Boeing Business Jet I, II and III); and the Airbus 320/319 (Airbus Corporate Jets).
The second batch of STCs will cover the Airbus A330/340 and are due for completion by the third quarter of 2017.
“Whether the customer is an airline, a corporation or a private owner they can take advantage of our engineering for their aircraft – it is a design solution. They can then update their inflight connectivity from 1990s technology to the very latest available today,” said Mohammed Alzeer.
This makes the STCs very attractive to potential GX buyers in the region who own ACJs, BBJs and VVIP derivatives of larger aircraft, such as the Boeing 777/747.
“We have to complete an engineering assessment for every installation, but overall, the STC cost will be around one tenth of the cost of developing one from scratch.”
Mohammed Alzeer said the first two STCs would be obtained on privately-owned aircraft.
He also hinted that the Boeing 747 STC would be gained on a private customer’s aircraft in the region, but would not give any more details.