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Acars Via Iridium Essay

717 words - 3 pages

ACARS via Iridium
Iridium is a large satellite constellation that consists of 66 low-earth orbiting (LEO), cross-linked satellites operating as a fully meshed network providing truly global coverage (including oceans, airways and polar regions). Iridium satellites are in a near-polar orbit at an altitude of 485 miles. The network is composed of 66 active satellites that fly in six orbital planes, each with 11 satellites per plane. Satellites circle the earth once every 100 minutes. ACARS is an Aircraft Communication Addressing and Reporting System otherwise known as Digital DataLink System. ACARS was first developed in the 1970’s. It is a point-to-point service that either sends ...view middle of the document...

New flight safety services such as Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) and Future Air Navigation System messaging (FANS) are currently undergoing live tests to help improve flight times and routes for Air Transportation.
Typical ACARS messages are only 100 to 200 characters in length. Such messages are made up of a one-block transmission from (or to) the aircraft, constrained to be no more than 220 characters within the body of the message. Iridium’s Short Burst Data Service (SBD) has the network transport capability to transmit short data messages between field equipment and a centralized host computing system. ACARS blocks are 238 bytes maximum; segmenting and distributing them across multiple SBD messages is not necessary. Each ACARS block is encapsulated in a unique SBD message. ACARS requires ARINC-429 Interface, compliant with ARINC 741 characteristics for satellite communication systems. Standardized nature of the ARINC 429 digital data bus allows Satcom Data Unit (SDU) to interface with wide variety of ACARS capable hardware.
Air-to-ground messages are originated from the Control Display Unit (CDU), which is located in the cockpit of the aircraft. The pilot will initiate his request through the...

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