Last Updated: 10/23/2012*


ATM - ADS-B 2As part of a nationwide aviation overhaul — called NextGen — Raytheon’s Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS) is already providing the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) with the early tools needed to transform the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS).

Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B)
Air traffic controllers using STARS at Philadelphia International Airport’s busy tower are using new satellite technology that will one day transform the nation’s air traffic system from radar navigation to an Internet in the sky. Raytheon updated the STARS tracker to fuse surveillance data from ADS-B, multilateration and traditional radar sources.

Philadelphia is one of four initial sites to get the technology, which relies on global positioning satellites to transmit a plane’s location to radios on the ground, controllers in towers and to other aircraft nearby. Philadelphia was selected because of its location in the congested East Coast airspace.

“Philadelphia is a pioneer site,” said Victoria Cox, FAA senior vice president, NextGen and Operations Planning, Air Traffic Organization, when she announced that since March 28, 2010 Philadelphia controllers have the capability to track planes equipped with the ADS-B. Raytheon worked closely with the FAA and its controllers in updating the situation displays to effectively present the ADS-B tracks.

The STARS multi-sensor fusion tracker, the only one certified by the FAA for operation in the U.S., is also being integrated into Enroute Automation Modernization for en route traffic.

(Photos used with permission of the Philidelphia Inquirer. Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.) - Air Traffic Controllers at Philadelphia International Airport


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