Former GE Aviation and IBM executive to lead technological innovation.

Lake Forest, CA | August 23, 2017– Panasonic Avionics today announces the appointment of David Bartlett as its new Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and Chief Information Security Officer (CISO).

Bartlett will be responsible for the continued development of Panasonic Avionics’ technology roadmap, harnessing his extensive experience in software and the Internet of Things.

He previously served as CTO of GE Aviation and was most recently the CTO of Current by GE. GE Aviation is a leading provider of jet and turboprop engines, components and integrated systems. Current, powered by GE, blends LED lighting and solar solutions with networked sensors and software to make cities and buildings energy efficient and smart.

Mark Jennings, Chief Operating Officer, Panasonic Avionics Corporation said: “We are delighted to welcome David to our team. For over 30 years, Panasonic Avionics has been the leader in delivering new and innovative inflight entertainment and connectivity services to the world’s leading airlines. We believe that David’s background in IoT, mobility, and security will ensure that we maintain a leadership position as we deliver our next-generation digital cabin solutions to our airline customers.”

Over the course of his career, Bartlett also held several management positions at IBM including Director of IBM Europe Software Development Lab, and Vice President of Europe, Middle East and Africa Support and Services. He led IBM’s Autonomic Computing program strategy at the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center. As IBM’s Vice President of Smarter Physical Infrastructure, he led digital projects in transportation, smart grid, and smart buildings where he was named one of the ‘top 15 people in the world to watch’ in intelligent buildings.

David Bartlett, Chief Technology Officer and Chief Information Security Officer of Panasonic Avionics Corporation, said: “I am thrilled to join this forward-thinking and innovative technology business in the aerospace sector. Panasonic’s technological solutions have been supporting airlines and delighting their passengers for many years. The road ahead is exciting and full of enormous opportunities to safely and securely deliver a premium experience.”

Bartlett earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and Chemistry at New York State University and completed the Computer Science Masters Program at the University of Minnesota. He earned an Executive MBA from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina and holds a PMP Master’s Degree from George Washington University.

Kontron SMARC-sAMX7 provides extremely energy-efficient SMARC 2.0 module for compact, fanless designs

Augsburg | July 12, 2017– Kontron, a leading global provider of Embedded Computing Technology (ECT), has introduced a new, extremely energy-efficient SMARC 2.0 module. Thanks to the use of low power NXP i.MX7 CPUs in both dual-core and single-core configurations the SMARC-sAMX7 is especially suitable for the development of smart devices in a very compact and fanless design. This approach, which balances processor and graphics performance while retaining a very low energy footprint, is especially useful in Internet of Things (IoT) and Industry 4.0 applications. The presence of two Ethernet ports directly on the board facilitates networking considerably.

The SMARC-sAMX7 features a 2x1GHz ARM Cortex A7 processor with an additional 200 MHz M4 processor in dual-core configuration, the single-core version runs at 800 MHz. It comes with up to 2GB DDR3 memory, a dual channel LVDS interface, up to two Gigabit Ethernet (GbE), three PCI-Express (PCIe) and four USB 4.0 ports. 64GB eMMC 5.0 is used as onboard storage. The SMARC-sAMX7 utilizes the Uboot bootloader and supports Yocto Linux as the operating system. It is fully operational in an extended temperature range from ‑20°C up to +85°C.

The new SMARC-sAMX7 module offers optional support for Kontron’s Security Solution APPROTECT. It is based on an integrated security chip, which in tandem with a specifically developed software framework protects applications, as well as all data processed and stored on the device. Additionally, Kontron’s APPROTECT licensing enables new business models such as ‘pay per use’ or time-based trial versions, as it can be used to easily enable or disable features via a predetermined set of variables.

The new Kontron SMARC-sAMX7 module is available now. For additional information please visit: https://www.kontron.com/products/boards-and-standard-form-factors/smarc/smarc-samx7.html

IFEC’ers, it is almost here – AIX 2017 that is – and we cannot wait. Over the next few issues, IFExpress will be providing a ‘sneak peek’ from a few AIX vendors. Additionally, we have a ‘Special Story’ for the AIX Show Edition – stay tuned and read on!

Aircraft Cabin Systems

ACS is very busy these days with the design on their second-generation 12.1” retractable monitor. Even though their first-generation model was highly accepted in the marketplace, “We are constantly striving to give our customers what they want” says Richie Sugimoto (shown above) including a very robust design offering high value. Customers have appreciated the overall simplicity of the unit, including the lighter weight and less moving parts providing a quieter unit in operational mode. Most importantly, customers love the ease of installation when upgrading their aircraft from older monitors. These units are offered for both the Airbus and Boeing series of aircraft. They are designed for AC power and with HDSDI video input, provide a clear, crisp quality picture. The first-generation retractable monitors utilize a patented, mechanical design developed by Mr. Yukio Sugimoto and was developed to be a mechanical plug-and-play attachment to either the existing B737 PSU’s or for the Airbus planes.

ACS has also been working on a new design of 4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) Modular Monitors. This new design concept allows the support of customizable input/output modules, allowing for the unit functionality with a wide variety of IFE systems. This unique design concept can meet the industry multiple demands with adding additional or different modules. This design is in the testing phase and expect production to release product to the marketplace in Q2. Available screen sizes range from 27” up to 75”.

All products are designed and manufactured in their Redmond, WA facility that is an AS9100 Certified facility. ACS will be at the upcoming AIX show in Hamburg, if in the area, stop by and see all of the new technology they are working on at stand 2C30 to discuss your needs.


digEcor

This year’s Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg will be unprecedented for Chief Executive David Withers and team as far as depth and breadth of solutions and in an increased presence both in size of booth and team in the IFEC zone, Hall B4 at stand 4E20. digEcor having recently expanded their sales team to include additional resource in the Middle East and Africa Region with the appointment of Eduardo Protasio, (from EuroAtlantic Airways) a new appointment for Asia Pacific in Stu McGraw commencing 27 March (previously QinetiQ and Virgin Australia) as well as Jorge Mompo’s appointment (previously Lumexis) as Sales Director of the America’s since AIX 2016. Headed by VP Global Sales, Paul Thorpe, digEcor are looking forward to what this will mean for the developing growth of the company and are looking forward to introducing this new team to visitors this year.

digEcor has been busy these past 12 months and has a handful of announcements to make at AIX 2017 they are keeping close to their chest. The GLIDE embedded system is making headway in the market as well as the continued success of digEcor’s passenger power for 2.1A USB and 110V power solutions, including pre integrated solutions with innovative seat vendors. Since AIX Hamburg 2016 digEcor has launched four new product lines including Passenger Service Solutions, LED Cabin Lighting, Cabin Management and digEcor’s own Moving Map.

digEcor’s mission to enable all airlines to create an extraordinary travel experience is still personified through their modular, flexible and tailored approach to meet the needs of airlines and vendors alike. The Integrated Flight Experience portfolio is still the only fully integrated system from one single vendor available today comprising GLIDE Embedded and Portable IFE, In-Seat Power, LED Cabin Lighting, Passenger Service Solutions, Cabin Management, Wi-Fi to stream content, ENGAGE application for crew, Tape Replacement and Content Services.

digEcor is showcasing this experience at AIX this year by cabin for Economy, Premium, Business and First class. In partnership with Avio Interiors, Geven Spa, Skypaxx, Thompson Seating and Pitch Aircraft Seating Systems, digEcor is primed to educate visitors by cabin or product, depending on the interest.


FTS New Brand Logo Identity

This past week, FTS proudly launched their new company logo. Here is what they had to say:

Over the past two years, FTS business has grown and evolved. In line with our expansion globally, across U.S. and Europe, as well as the addition of new exciting product range, it’s time for a change!

With a sharp and crisp font and brighter blue used, it is a modernized look which reflects our core values – constantly innovating, cutting-edge technology and revolutionize the business.

Being a newcomer, FTS strives to revolutionize the IFEC industry with new business ideas, innovative product offerings and high quality hardware.

We do not follow the norm. We set ourselves apart. This is what we strive for and we are excited to share that with you.

Our new logo will have its first appearance in AIX 2017.

Check us out and see you at booth 2E34!


AIX

Twenty One products and ideas are in the finals of the 2017 Crystal Cabin Awards, the world’s most renowned prize for innovation in aircraft interiors. From a parking guidance system for cabin baggage to a lavatory mirror that displays on-board video and information as if by magic, the finalists’ submissions include innovative ideas for pretty much every aspect of the cabin – revealing today how we will be flying in the world of tomorrow. In the field of “Cabin Concepts” in particular, the giants are lining up for a showdown: Bombardier, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines are all hoping for a trophy in the same category. With 85 shortlist entrants from 21 nations, the 2017 Crystal Cabin Awards have been more popular and more international than ever before in their 11 years of history. The seven winners of the coveted Crystal Cabin Award trophies will be announced on the first evening of the Aircraft Interiors Expo (4 – 6 April, 2017) in Hamburg, Germany.


Boeing

Boeing and CDB Aviation Lease Finance (CDB Aviation) announced an order for 30 737 MAX 8 airplanes. The order, valued at $3.3 billion at current list prices, was previously unidentified on Boeing’s Orders & Deliveries website. Based in Dublin, Ireland, CDB Aviation operates as a wholly owned Irish subsidiary of China Development Bank Financial Leasing Co LTD (CDB Leasing) (HKEX stock code:1606). With registered capital of $US50 million and a fleet of over 200 aircraft, CDB Aviation has over 10 years’ experience in the business and is one of the largest and most influential Chinese-owned aviation leasing companies.
And while we are on Boeing, keep your eye on the new midsize airplane demand for the companies next new plane. Boeing expects to launch a new larger B737 beyond the B737 MAX by the end of 2017. Also expect it to fall below the B787 passenger payload. The so-called B797 will probably seat from 200 to almost 300 passengers over a range of some 4300 to 5300 nautical miles – in the older B767-200 payload-range footprint. Single vs twin aisle is a big deciding factor as well as competition with their existing B737 fleet and it’s growth. Here is more reading for your airplane interest

Customers Press Boeing To Launch New Midsize Widebody Aircraft Soon | Commercial Aviation content from Aviation Week

Boeing’s Plan For Bigger 737 MAX Meets with Industry Doubts 

Boeing’s talking with airlines about a ‘797,’ and they like what they hear | The Seattle Times

The Boeing 737 MAX Is the Most Underrated Plane of All Time — The Motley Fool


SITA

SITA, recently announced the formation of the Secure Journeys Working Group to address today’s airport security threats in the USA and to work towards creating a secure and efficient passenger experience throughout the airport. The launch of the Secure Journeys initiative is in response to the current security climate and recent attacks on non-secure areas of the airport, including the Brussels airport bombing and Fort Lauderdale airport shooting. Members of the working group cite these incidents as examples that demonstrate the need to rethink the approach to getting passengers through the airport quickly and safely. The newly extended group will address growing challenges, including:

  • Moving passengers and baggage more rapidly through non-secure areas of the airport, such as check-in and baggage claim areas;
  • Reducing and effectively managing security wait times to reduce lines of people in non-secure areas;
  • Incorporating biometrics for passenger screening authentication;
  • Addressing ways in which identity management solutions can be used along with data analytics to reduce the growing concerns around the insider threat.

Bad Aviation Joke: A vulture boards an airplane, carrying two dead raccoons. The stewardess looks at him and says, ‘I’m sorry, sir, only one carrion allowed per passenger.’ OK, the worst science joke then: Two hydrogen atoms meet. One says, ‘I’ve lost my electron.’ The other says ‘Are you sure?’ The first replies, ‘Yes, I’m positive.’

Group to address today’s airport security threats and define roadmap for a safe and efficient end-to-end passenger experience
Atlanta, Georgia | March 16, 2017– SITA, the global provider of border security and IT solutions to governments, airlines and airports, today announced the formation of the Secure Journeys Working Group to address today’s airport security threats in the USA and to work towards creating a secure and efficient passenger experience throughout the airport.

The launch of the Secure Journeys initiative is in response to the current security climate and recent attacks on non-secure areas of the airport, including the Brussels airport bombing and Fort Lauderdale airport shooting. Members of the working group cite these incidents as examples that demonstrate the need to rethink the approach to getting passengers through the airport quickly and safely.

Brian Cobb, Vice President of Customer Services, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), said: “Because CVG is a mid-market airport, we have the unique ability to quickly test the effectiveness of emerging technology on security and efficiency. As a member of Secure Journeys, we can use our knowledge to help shape recommendations to the TSA and CBP based on real-world experience rather than untested concepts. We look forward to collaborating as a community to ensure the safety and convenience of the traveling public.”

Secure Journeys is an evolution and expansion of SITA’s Border Automation User Group which was formed in 2015 to facilitate implementation of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Automated Passport Control program.

The newly extended group will address growing challenges, including:

  • Moving passengers and baggage more rapidly through non-secure areas of the airport, such as check-in and baggage claim areas;
  • Reducing and effectively managing security wait times to reduce lines of people in non-secure areas;
  • Incorporating biometrics for passenger screening authentication;
  • Addressing ways in which identity management solutions can be used along with data analytics to reduce the growing concerns around the insider threat.

The value of Secure Journeys is its ability to bring together experts and representatives from across the air transport spectrum to provide input and recommendations based on their unique perspective and experience. Given the Administration’s focus on transportation security and commitment to large-scale investment for the nation’s infrastructure, the solutions and recommendations identified by Secure Journeys are vital to informing key decision makers.

David Menzel, Sales Director-Government Markets, SITA, Founding Member, Secure Journeys, said: “As the U.S. government looks for answers to a new set of threats passengers face, Secure Journeys will identify solutions to common ‘soft target’ challenges, passenger screening and insider threats and develop a set of recommended standards for U.S. airports to adopt. We look forward to continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security and our airline and airport partners to make America’s airports safer and improve the overall passenger experience from reservation to destination.”

Dublin, Ireland | February 9, 2017–
Research and Markets has announced the addition of the “Global Mass Transit Security Market 2017-2021” report to their offering.

The global mass transit security systems market to grow at a CAGR of 9.04% during the period 2017-2021.

Global Mass Transit Security Systems Market 2017-2021, has been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from industry experts. The report covers the market landscape and its growth prospects over the coming years. The report also includes a discussion of the key vendors operating in this market.

According to the report, one driver in the market is investment in infrastructure development. Governments across the EU have invested in the development of their national infrastructure. The development of multilane highways and ultra-modern airports has ensured the rapid growth of access control installations and traffic surveillance systems. The growing number of airports increases the security threats, which drives the installation of security systems for proper and safe functioning. Increased business operations between countries through ports need secure communications and cargo scanning systems. Therefore, the overall development of the infrastructure has contributed to the growth of the mass transit security.

Key vendors

  • Axis Communications
  • Bosch Security Systems
  • NICE Systems (Qognify)
  • Panasonic
  • Tyco

Other prominent vendors

  • AngelTrax
  • Cisco Systems
  • Fortem
  • Genetec
  • Hikvision Digital Technology
  • IndigoVision
  • Intergraph
  • Kratos Defense and Security Solutions
  • Teleste

Key Topics Covered:

Part 01: Executive summary

Part 02: Scope of the report

Part 03: Market research methodology

Part 04: Introduction

Part 05: Market landscape

Part 06: Market assumptions

Part 07: Market segmentation by components

Part 08: Geographical segmentation

Part 09: Buying criteria

Part 10: Market drivers

Part 11: Impact of drivers

Part 12: Market challenges

Part 13: Impact of drivers and challenges

Part 14: Market trends

Part 15: Five forces analysis

Part 16: Vendor landscape

Part 17: Appendix

For more information about this report visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/8nbjnt/global_mass

We started the first installment of our 2016’s predictions review in last week’s issue, so here is Part 2, or the wrap-up, from last year’s crystal ball – you can see how we did:

A) Beacons:
While last year we wrote about the future of beacon technology to be used in airports and on baggage, the market did not grow as quickly as we anticipated and this was due to a lot of factors. The following quote from tnooz sums it up pretty well: “As airports still search for use cases with value, and there is no generally accepted platform for this technology and its applications, the adoption is consequently slow.” Standards are the issue but we are happy to report some airlines are evaluating the technology.

Here is what we wrote last January:
“We have shown a number of beacon devices in pictures from the IFE trade shows but basically we are talking about mobile location, mobile intelligence or mobile sales communication devices. These are small battery free or line powered devices that communicate with your device over Bluetooth (4.1) and Wi-Fi. The folks at SITA have been developing a lot of airport related solutions and it remains to be seen when they will come aboard planes. Developed at Apple, the iBeacon Registry is their effort to get this technology started in airports and here are their services: It allows beacon owners (airlines, airports or 3rd parties) to manage their beacon infrastructure and track where they are placed in an airport. The technology enables airports to monitor beacon deployment to prevent radio interference with existing Wi-Fi access points. It provides beacons owners with a simple mechanism to set the ‘meta-data’ associated with beacons. Also, it has an API for app developers who want to use these beacons for developing travel and other related apps.”

Notes SITA: ‘The aims of the registry are to promote the use of beacons in the Air Transport Industry and reduce the cost and complexity of deployment. This can be achieved with the following design goals:

  • Promote shared beacon infrastructure to reduce cost and complexity of deployment.
  • Introduce standard beacon types and data definition to encourage reuse.
  • Provide a simple to use API to discover beacons and get meta-data about beacons.
  • Provide tools to airport operators and beacon owners to visualize and track beacons.
  • Be vendor agnostic – the service should work with beacons from any vendor.”

While airport beacon technology has not taken off as well as we expected we provide this current list of the technology and its’ applications, and the further use of wireless devices used to find things.

B) Security:

“This topic is massive and we will cover it for many times and years to come but we wanted to share one thought from an online article we read – ‘People were reported to be ‘almost universally’ the biggest weakness in information security, ahead of technology and processes..” We note, of the respondents that reported to have an insider threat or policy, 70% offer employee training to minimize risk it said “The company employs intelligence teams that study different aspects of communications, user activity, social media, suspicious activity and other details,” said one respondent. “We’re seeing a lot more hands-on training, employee monitoring, and testing to address the issue,” said Ari Kaplan, security researcher. In fact, this human focused trend will be the number one item at this year’s CES in Las Vegas, the show of new gimmick things, one venue stood out: “#1 Say Goodbye to Cool, Hello to Security and Safety. At CES we have come to expect the latest new shiny gadgets but this is the beginning of change. The world is changing and aviation will be focused on this subject this year. Just consider how many folks touch technology that plugs into planes!”

If anything, we underestimated how big this subject was to become in our aviation lifestyle. The folks at Transparency Market Research noted that the total commercial aviation market is predicted to climb to $29.3 Billion by 2021 from $25.3 B in 2016 – roughly half of the market will be Avionics retrofits, but they note: “The use of modern commercial avionics systems also makes aviation vehicles more susceptible to online hacks.” Thus, our interest in security.

Another perfect example of interest growth is the increase in security related web links we save in our browser. In the beginning of 2016 we had 9 links identified – today we have 64. While we can’t begin to identify the many stories related to security failings at airports and from airlines and aviation hackers last year, this subject will get bigger and bigger – with a possible unacceptable number in 2017 – some possibly being potential horror stories.

C) Virtual Reality:

We noted VR last year: “Don’t get too excited about virtual reality for aircraft applications. In fact, here is the view from Rick Merritt in EE Times who seems to agree: “Some people will claim virtual and augmented reality will be the next big thing in the run up to the debut of a handful of major platforms in the spring. But by fall the heat will start to fade as consumers, chilled by their high price tags and underwhelming performance, give a pass on them as gifts for Xmas 2016.”Some airlines have been flirting with the concept of VR for a number of years and have even featured the technology in their airline lounges, but we believe this technology has a long way to go before it can migrate successfully to the airborne environment, especially if motion sickness is taken into consideration.”

It also begins to look like augmented reality might have a better inflight usage and acceptance this year. As an example the airline might transmit data to augmented devices to place information on glasses or phones like location, airspeed, whatever. However, The industrial market for augmented reality, and the logistics and manufacturing AR markets in particular, will soar by more than 400% in 2017, according to a forecast by ABI Research but it is hard to see IFEC applications, at least in lower classes, except those brought aboard by passengers.

D) Other:

Lastly, we noted in Other last year: “We probably don’t need to say it but Economy Class will get more crowded, competition will drop air fares as competition ‘crams’ up – possibly a new ‘mini or micro’ class, there should be more mergers as more airlines take on the Delta World concept, deals and freebies will exist for the frequent fliers while the rest of the travelers will pretty much just exist inflight (if that’s possible) you will need better pre-boarding ID, Airbnb and Uber concepts will tempt a new US airline concept but the idea will be killed (this is a tough one in the US), and in the end VR may be needed after all to blunt the reality of coach or class.”

We think we did pretty well last year and next week we will do a little predicting again and you will see what predictions our reader have too!


Boeing:
Boeing delivered 748 aircraft in 2016 (490 737s; nine 747s; 13 767s; 99 777s; 137 787s) vs a record of 762 in 2015 (495 737s; 18 747s; 16 767s; 98 777s; 135 787s).

Boeing booked orders for 848 aircraft in 2016 (701 737s, 18 747s, 26 767s, 23 777s; 80 787s) vs 878 in 2015 (666 737s; six 747s; 49 767s; 58 777s; 99 787s), net orders totaled 668 in 2016.

Boeing ended 2016 with a backlog of 5,715 aircraft (4,452 737s; 28 747s; 93 767s; 442 777s; 700 787s), down from 5,795 in 2015 (4,392 737s; 20 747s; 80 767s; 524 777s; 779 787s) – 550 737, 17 B747, 26 767, 17 777, and 58 787.

Technically, Boeing fell 80 planes short of their goal in 2016 – their lowest year orders since 2010 – and plane sales just may slow down in 2017 as well. However, Boeing does have a total of 5,715 jets on order.

Editor’s Note: Airbus is expected to announce the delivery of up to 688 planes, according to industry rumors, as their announcement is expected January 11th. If they announce 259 orders in Dec they could beat Boeing’s 668. Expect some surprises!


Rockwell Collins:
Rockwell Collins has acquired Pulse.Aero Limited, a UK-based company specializing in self-service bag drop solutions and airline applications, to enhance the company’s passenger processing services for airports and airlines. This acquisition further expands Rockwell Collins’ Information Management Services strategy to enable the connected aviation ecosystem.“As passengers seek to take more control of their travel experience, this acquisition expands our portfolio of self-service passenger processing solutions, enabling us to streamline and simplify the passenger journey through a fully connected airport,” said Dave Nieuwsma, senior vice president, Information Management Services for Rockwell Collins. Pulse.Aero’s products and services will be integrated into the Airport Systems portfolio of Rockwell Collins’ Information Management Services business. Rockwell Collins and Pulse. Aero have worked together on several successful deployments, including Dublin Airport, where new self-bag drop units were installed, reducing queue times and improving customer service.


Valour Consultancy Study:

A new paid study is available from Valour, but here is what they say about it: “The connected aircraft represents a paradigm shift for airlines and many are now in the early stages of deploying various applications. Several have begun to embrace staged increases in electronic flight bag (EFB) capabilities often starting with one or two apps that they can later build upon, according to a new study from UK-based market intelligence firm, Valour Consultancy. The report – How the Connected Aircraft fits into the Internet of Things – thoroughly details the raft of connected aircraft applications airlines are exploring in the hope of realizing considerable cost savings and/or ancillary revenue gains. It finds that the benefits of eTechlog, eCabin Logbook and enhanced flight operational quality assurance (FOQA) programs using quick access recorder (QAR) data are becoming better understood, while aircraft health monitoring solutions are being enriched by the infusion of increased data flows from previously disparate sub-systems and other information sources on and off the aircraft. Though certain airlines are further along in their connected aircraft strategy than others, there are many challenges to be overcome, says report author, Craig Foster. “Suppliers have invested millions in developing differentiated offerings and this lack of standards has resulted in concern and confusion about investing in the wrong technology. Second, there exists little in the way of tangible metrics that show how quickly a return on investment (ROI) may be achieved from connected aircraft applications. Third, there is a perception that the act of harnessing vast amounts of data results in magical value with some undoubtedly having overstated the reality of what is possible”. Download the whole story about the study in the link above or you can contact Craig for more information at: craig.foster@valorconsultancy.com

Lake Forest, CA | December 20, 2016–
Panasonic Avionics Corporation statement

The allegations made to the press by IOActive regarding in-flight entertainment (IFE) systems manufactured by Panasonic Avionics Corporation (“Panasonic”) contain a number of inaccurate and misleading statements about Panasonic’s systems. These misstatements and inaccuracies call into question many of the assertions made by IOActive.

Most notably, IOActive has chosen to make highly misleading and inflammatory statements suggesting that hackers could “theoretically” gain access to flight controls by hacking into Panasonic’s IFE systems. Panasonic strenuously disagrees with any suggestion by IOActive that such an attack is possible, and calls upon IOActive to clarify that its research does not support any such inference.

Additional context
IOActive has presented no evidence that its examination of Panasonic’s systems would support any such suggestion, and its statement that its “research revealed it would also theoretically be possible that such a vulnerability could present an entry point to the wider network, including the aircraft controls domain” will only serve to falsely alarm the flying public.

Furthermore, IOActive employee Ruben Santamarta’s statement regarding credit card theft is simply not true. Mr. Santamarta makes incorrect assumptions about where credit card data is stored and encrypted within Panasonic’s systems.

It is important to note that, during the course of this unauthorized, in-service testing, the safety, security and comfort of passengers of the aircraft were never in danger or compromised due to the system segregation and robust security design of our inflight entertainment and communications (IFEC) product, and of all commercial aircraft as well. His exploit itself was limited to a single seat and information gathering; control override of the IFEC seat and system did not occur.

It is also very important to note that, in its communications to the press, IOActive made unfounded, unproven conclusions. The basis for many of these conclusions would first necessitate that an attacker gained a physical connection within the IFE network. During the unauthorized testing, network penetration, or even network connection to Pansonic’s product, did not occur.

The conclusions suggested by IOActive to the press are not based on any actual findings or facts. The implied potential impacts should be interpreted as theoretical at best, sensationalizing at worst, and absolutely not justified by any hypothetical vulnerability findings discovered by IOActive.

IOActive, in statements to the press, inappropriately mixed a discussion of hypothetical vulnerabilities inherent to all aircraft electronics systems with specific findings regarding Panasonic’s systems, creating a highly misleading impression that Panasonic’s systems have been found to be a source of insecurity to aircraft operation.

Like any responsible business, Panasonic continually tests the robustness of its systems, and reviewed all of the claims made by Mr. Santamarta. It subsequently engaged Attack Research (AR) to conduct validation testing in May 2015 and again in 2016 to ensure that the few minor concerns (in no way linked to the control of an aircraft) identified by Mr. Santamarta had been fully remediated, and this was confirmed in a written report to Panasonic.

Panasonic does not condone unauthorized security testing during aircraft operation in uncontrolled environments, such as those conducted by IOActive. Panasonic strongly supports legislation that should be enacted to make on-board electronic intrusion a criminal act.

Security professionals who wish to test our systems legitimately and safely can do so by participating in our Bug Bounty program (bugbounty@panasonic.aero) in which Panasonic provides unfettered access to our products to allow for in-depth security testing and analysis.

Panasonic IFE products have a robust security design that complies with, or exceeds, all requirements, and are routinely and regularly tested by third-party professional security firms, as well as by participants in our independent Bug Bounty program.

Panasonic also fully supports aircraft manufacturers and aviation regulatory agencies to ensure our IFE systems are designed to comply with all aircraft manufacturer and regulatory security requirements, and Panasonic routinely reviews our designs with said groups.

Additionally, Panasonic is a member of the Aviation Information Sharing and Analysis Center (A-ISAC) for the express purpose of assuring that vulnerabilities are shared and assessed with a collective oversight so that the integrity of the systems can be maintained. Panasonic’s IFE software is certified at Level-E per DO-178B, with “No Effect” to aircraft safety.

  • Real-time updates on queuing now available at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

Atlanta, Georgia | November 1, 2016– Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, known as America’s Friendliest Airport®, is using sophisticated technology from global IT provider SITA to offer its 44 million passengers real-time information for their journey through the airport.

Passengers can now view security wait times before they travel as well as when they arrive at the airport. Today, real-time checkpoint wait times are available on the airport’s website; on flight information displays in the terminals and PHX Sky Train® stations; and on Sky Harbor’s visual paging screens in the terminals.

Committed to providing a great passenger experience, Phoenix Sky Harbor rolled out SITA QueueAnalyzer, the intelligent queue management technology from SITA and its partner iinside, following a successful two-month pilot at the airport. It is now in use at five security checkpoints in Terminals 2 and 4, providing accurate real-time information. More than 80% of passengers use Terminal 4, which is home to American Airlines and Southwest Airlines, the airport’s dominant carriers.

In addition to providing passengers with the information they need, SITA QueueAnalyzer provides airport management with dashboards to assess current wait times and view live video of lines. It also provides dashboards for quick analysis of real-time information against historical data, allowing for better allocation of resources to avoid bottlenecks. Airports across the USA are focusing on improving queue management and SITA’s technology will be in operation at a number of high-volume airports before the end of the year.

Randy Pizzi, SITA President, Americas, said: “Passengers want the right information at the right time and SITA QueueAnalyzer ensures that Sky Harbor provides accurate information at every touchpoint. Not only does it monitor wait times but it can predict queue times at key checkpoints so that lines can be managed more efficiently. This is a great example of smart technology being used to deliver a better passenger experience.”

SITA QueueAnalyzer is also being installed as part of Sky Harbor’s Terminal 3 modernization and will come online later this year, when the first phase of the terminal project is completed.

Panasonic Avionics Corporation is engaging with elite ‘white hat’ hackers through leading bug bounty provider HackerOne to ensure the security of its inflight entertainment systems. HackerOne has helped major companies such as General Motors, Uber, Twitter, Airbnb, DropBox and Adobe identify and fix security vulnerabilities as part of authorized bug bounty and vulnerability coordination programs. “Panasonic Avionics has always taken a proactive approach to security,” said Michael Dierickx, Director of Security Engineering and Information Security Officer at Panasonic Avionics Corporation.“We have extensive processes in place to identify potential and emerging vulnerabilities, and we also engage with security consultation firms who provide penetration testing and other services. Still, these teams bring a fresh perspective and innovative ways to search for potential issues. We want to harness this out-of-the-box thinking and create a win-win scenario that rewards both Panasonic and this community for our hard work and dedication.” With the HackerOne platform Panasonic Avionics has access to the world’s most powerful external security team, the global hacker community, to continue enhancing the security of their internet-connected systems,”said HackerOne CEO Marten Mickos. “Inviting white hat or ethical hackers to hunt for bugs is a powerful method for making connected technology safer for everyone.” Having noted the release, we asked a few questions:

1. “Panasonic Avionics Corporation is engaging with elite ‘white hat’ hackers through leading bug bounty provider HackerOne to ensure the security of its inflight entertainment systems.” Does this NOT include inflight connectivity? If not, what are the sources of hacker data inputs only for IFE?

ANSWER: Our focus at Def Con was on our eXW system, which uses our inflight API (IFAPI) software architecture. Our decision to prioritize the eXW system was due to customer demand. More and more, airlines want the opportunity to interface with our IFE system, and IFAPI is our gateway. While our program’s initial focus is on IFAPI, and our ultimate goal is to include all of our systems.

2. What OS’s are included in the Panasonic Entertainment systems, and are they typically, or ever been, hacked?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics uses a variety of operating systems based on the configuration. As we’ve moved into open platform architectures, we’ve responded by enhancing our own internal processes to ensure the security of the systems.

While we can’t comment on systems that have been delivered to our airline customers, we can say that stories in the press about someone’s ability to take control of the aircraft using the IFE system is almost always theoretical. Remember that our IFE system software is certified at Level-E per DO-178B, with ‘No Effect’ to aircraft safety for any failure. We do not expect that classification to change.

3. We assume some receipt of transmitted data is involved in the IFE systems? Correct? If so, what onboard/off-board data streams are involved.

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics reviews and protects all required data streams as determined in the review.

4. Is Panasonic looking at data sent from IFE systems to the aircraft? What type of data? Is the reverse true as well? What kind of data, if so?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics works with the various OEMs, other suppliers, and in the associated standards and regulatory forums to align on the necessary security measures and means to protect the interfaces and data.

5. Is loaded content today checked for malicious code that a hacker would induce at a ground station after being created in California?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics adheres to the MPAA security standards for media and conducts internal and independent third party security audits.

(Editor’s Note: IFExpress should mention, that Panasonic’s inflight entertainment data content facilities in California are some of the best and most secure we have ever seen. Check out this link for an earlier story by IFExpress on the Media Content Service operations and interview with Julie Lichty.)

6. Will the ‘Bug Bounty’ program include passenger messaging, connectivity engagement signals, airborne RFI (hacker), onboard radiation, etc.?

ANSWER: The bug bounty program will eventually be opened up to the entirety of the Panasonic Avionics product portfolio.

7. Does Panasonic have a ‘brick wall’ between the connectivity systems and the IFE, and the aircraft, or are there places that might be in question? If so, please give us an example of where such an external infection might cross over into the IFE or aircraft.

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics deploys the necessary security practices to protect the assets.

8. What hardware/software did Panasonic provide at DefCon? Will there be a similar effort at the California IFE data facility? If not, why not?

ANSWER: Our focus at DefCon event was on our wireless eXW platform, which uses our In-Flight (IFAPI) software architecture. Our customers want more opportunities to interface with our IFE system, and IFAPI is our gateway. While our program’s initial focus is on IFAPI, our ultimate goal is to include all of our systems.

9. Who is Panasonic’s head of IFEC hardware security?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics addresses security from many vectors and does have a dedicated Director of Security Engineering.

10. Please describe any hacks, if any, in today’s IFEC or aircraft that Panasonic has found… ?

ANSWER: While we can’t comment on systems that have been delivered to our airline customers, we can share that Panasonic Avionics security practices includes secure code reviews, penetration testing, and vulnerability scanning as part of the product life cycle. Carrying out these processes is intended to discover quality issues (aka: Hacks) early on and convert these into security improvements in our products.

11. Has Panasonic attempted under test conditions to induce ‘bad data’ or hacker data into Panasonic modules in the lab? Does Panasonic have any ‘hacker testing’ today?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics has put in place extensive best practice processes to identify potential and emerging threats and vulnerabilities. Panasonic engages in both internal and 3rd party based, vulnerability scanning and penetration testing.

12. Are Boeing and/or Airbus into this as well with you…will they be advised if issues are found?

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics actively engages with both Airbus and Boeing Security to share information and discuss issues that impact product security,as well as our participation in the A-ISAC.

13. Please describe how Panasonic will handle issues if discovered… and there will be issues!

ANSWER: Panasonic Avionics follows its security incident response standards for monitoring, alerting, prioritization, and remediation.

(Editor’s Note: HackerOne is the world’s most popular bug bounty platform, connecting organizations with the world’s largest community of highly-qualified security researchers. More than 550 organizations, including The U.S. Department of Defense, General Motors, Uber, Twitter, Yahoo!, GitHub, Square, Dropbox and the CERT Coordination Center trust HackerOne to find critical software vulnerabilities before criminals can exploit them. HackerOne is headquartered in San Francisco with a development office in the Netherlands. Visit this website for more information.)


INMARSAT:
Inmarsat, provider of global mobile satellite communications services, has signed an agreement with Beijing Marine Communication & Navigation Company (MCN) and Aviation Data Communication Corporation (ADCC) to provide aviation safety services to Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) and Operators. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was unveiled at ATC Global 2016, which is taking place in Beijing this week, and outlines MCN/ADCC’s intention to offer cockpit communication services, including Inmarsat’s Classic Aero and next generation SwiftBroadband-Safety services, in the People’s Republic of China (PRC).

Classic Aero is a high-quality voice and data safety service currently used by most of the world’s airlines. It offers reliable and secure satellite surveillance and communications (FANS/ACARS) that meet International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) global flight tracking requirements.

SwiftBroadband-Safety utilizes secure IP-based broadband capabilities that far exceed those of other connectivity alternatives. It offers global, high speed, connectivity for cockpit and aircraft operations, with airlines benefitting from greater efficiency, reliability and capacity at a lower cost. The solution is always on and always secure, delivering next-generation applications, including flight data streaming (‘Black Box in the Cloud’) and real-time Electronic Flight Bag applications such as graphical weather. Inmarsat’s partnership with MCN and ADCC is expected to be finalized later this year and fits with the announcement made earlier this year of plans for a MCN and Inmarsat joint venture to provide comprehensive aircraft cabin and connectivity solutions across the PRC.


SATCOM DIRECT:
Global aeronautical communications provider, Satcom Direct (SD), announced today it has acquired AircraftLogs (“Stewart-Ratliff Aviation Services, Inc”), a company based in Columbus, OH, that offers the latest technology in aircraft flight scheduling software and tax reporting tools for corporate and private flight departments. With the purchase of AircraftLogs, SD adds scheduling and tax capabilities to its Integrated Flight Operations Management portfolio.


VTS:
VTS (Video Technology Services) today announced that it is employing cutting edge technology to launch its latest SKY-SIS II Program for older Seatback IFE replacement and upgrade. This new product involves bridging thirty years of experience, combining traditional IFE systems with the latest new technologies and is an answer to requests from VTS client airlines, which is where all of VTS innovations have originated. According to Philip LaPierre, VP Engineering, “The long list of engineering and successful product developments have come from airline requests and over the last 30 years there have been many VTS firsts including; the first LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) IFE Video Projector, first LCD monitors for IFE applications, first VOD Systems, first Digital Video Player (DVP) to replace conventional videotape, first affordable old seatback retrofit and upgrade solution and others. Stop by their booth 219 at APEX Expo, Singapore, Oct 24-27, 2016 and see for yourself.


OTHER:

IFPL:
OK, AS9100 Certification may not seem like a big deal to you (and we had to look it up) but it turns out that in aviation, quality management is a very big deal… with every airplane part! So, you might ask, what can be so difficult about setting up a Quality Assurance program? Plenty, in fact we counted well over 200 action items, systems, documents, records, developments, implements and more actions need to complete the certification. In fact, if you want to finally see what all this “quality” certification means, check out this “easy” outline of the cert actions

Notes IFPL: “IFPL are delighted to have achieved certification to AS9100C. This is a key stage in the develop- ment of IFPL and demonstrates that our Management Systems are mature and robust. IFPL recognizes that compliance with quality accreditations forms the foundations of their business success. Quality is in the DNA of the company culture, engaging employees to continually improve systems and products to benefit our customer satisfaction.

IFPL’s facility is based on the Isle of Wight, just off the south coast of the UK. The leadership team at IFPL ensures that the management system activities are carried out in accordance with the Quality Management System, the European Aviation Safety Agency requirements of EASA Part 21G and the newly awarded International Aerospace Standard AS9100C.”

They went on to say, “Quality, reliability, and safety are critical values for the aerospace industry. The BSI only award the certificate once their rigorous and stringent criteria has been met. Both of these certifications high- light IFPL’s commitment to meeting and exceeding the increasingly stringent industry requirements for aerospace related products and assures our manufacturing processes consistently meet or exceed the requirements and expectations of customers presenting the most challenging of applications.” And, in case you didn’t know, CEO Geoff Underwood founded IFPL almost 20 years ago and it has the largest portfolio of proven IFEC products and services in its sector. They are proud to supply the world’s leading inline manufacturers and airlines, who have come to rely on them to provide inspiration to the enhancement of their passengers’ experience; delivered through their innovative product design and proven reputation for reliability. For more information on the IFPL products check out the following link: IFPL – Connecting Your Passengers

Gogo:

1. 2Ku is now up and flying across three airline partners – Aeromexico, Delta and Virgin Atlantic
2. 2Ku is installed on about a dozen aircraft
3. Gogo has now received six STCs to install the technology on various aircraft types
4. By the end of 2016 Gogo expects to have 75-100 2Ku installations. For 2017 that number increases to 350-450 and in 2018 increases again to 500-700 install.
5.Gogo was selected by Delta Private Jets to equip its feet of >70 business jets with Gogo Biz 4G inflight connectivity for 2Q17.
6. Want see something cool? Watch this Gogo 2Ku hardware installation on a GOL B737-800 – Gogo Inflight Internet Video: Behind the scenes with the first Gogo 2Ku installation on GOL – Gogo Concourse

Inmarsat:

At the end of June, Inmarsat has announced that its advanced Global Xpress (GX) Aviation in-flight connectivity service has been certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for the Airbus A320 aircraft family, bringing it a step closer to being available as line-fit or retrofit on every major Airbus and Boeing airframe. Here is a link for more information – GX Aviation certified for Airbus A320 aircraft – Inmarsat


OTHER (somewhat related) NEWS

1. We have to thank Bill Baltra for this one. Have you heard about ModoBag. Yep, you ride your bag now, and if you don’t believe it, check out this video – Modobag: World’s First Motorized, Rideable Luggage! – YouTube We contacted them but there was no response.  you be the judge of their product if it achieves acceptability; besides, it might not look too cool in a skirt! Cruise the airport on top of a piece of motorized luggage

2. This may explain today’s aircraft Wi-Fi usage: Major study links low internet usage to slow broadband – BBC News

3. IFExpress recently asked Rich Salter (Engineering Consultant) about issues involved with security and IFEC and he had 3 points for your consideration:
a. There is an ARINC group addressing onboard cyber-security, and see the presentation made by Boeing’s Derek Schatz at a recent ARINC CSS meeting.
b. Panasonic has begun a partnership with hackers: Continuing what its Director of Security Engineering and Information Security Officer Michael Dierickx called a proactive approach to security, Panasonic Avionics Corporation developed a bug bounty program through HackerOne. The program is aimed at bolstering security of Panasonic’s inflight entertainment systems.

While the announcement coincided with the start of the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas, the company will kick off the bug bounty program at the DefCon Conference later this week and will extend an invitation to participate to what Dierickx referred to as a select group of hackers.”We have extensive processes in place to identify potential and emerging vulnerabilities, and we also engage with security consultation firms who provide penetration testing and other services,” Dierickx said in a release. “Still, these teams bring a fresh perspective and innovative ways to search for potential issues.” (Editor’s Note: More on this next week.)
c. And we had an FAA man present on security at the last Tech Conference.
Finally, We should mention what the feds say about aviation security – this may be VERY timely: Securing the NextGen aviation network

4. If you are Traveling to the US, you might have to cough up your online presence! – Traveling to US? Agencies want to Spy on your Social Media activities right from Airport and Attention US-bound tourists: Social media accounts subject to inspection

5. SpeedNews reports: INMARSAT conducted survey that found 92% of airline pax would like to access onboard connectivity; 54% over inflight meals.

6. See if you are getting old by analyzing your travel messaging:
What is the impact of text and messaging apps on travel? | Hotel Management

7. Go ahead, spend the money on a good set of headphones: On airplanes, good headphones make good neighbors – Elliott

And lastly, we want to tell you about a publication that we think is really useful and incredibly data rich – it’s called Airline Weekly and it is delivered by the internet each Monday. The Weekly is usually 12 pages long and covers airline/airport happenings worldwide. The Weekly is a subscriber-supported publication, paid for by readers who want a more interesting, more valuable read about the airline business. Each Monday, Airline Weekly reports who’s flying where, new marketing approaches, fleet, finance and key airline and airport data. And most importantly, Airline Weekly readers will enjoy insightful analysis and new ideas found nowhere else. For example, the weekly sections include: Weekly News Review, Fleet Info, Finance, Marketing, Airports, Environment, Routes & Networks, and Around the World. If you want worldwide airline info, this publication is the one… and, they will give you a few free publications for your evaluation. Get it! Airline Weekly – Shouldn’t a publication about an interesting industry be, well, interesting?
Also, you might want to check out their weekly podcast. It is a great weekly update.

Lake Forest, California | August 3, 2016– Panasonic Avionics Corporation is engaging with elite “white hat” hackers through leading bug bounty provider HackerOne to ensure the security of its inflight entertainment systems.

HackerOne has helped major companies such as General Motors, Uber, Twitter, Airbnb, DropBox and Adobe identify and fix security vulnerabilities as part of authorised bug bounty and vulnerability coordination programs.

Panasonic, the world’s largest provider of inflight entertainment and communications systems, is taking part in the program as it is acknowledged as best practice for effective security by identifying any weaknesses in internet-connected systems.

The bug bounty program will begin by inviting a select group of hackers to participate and will launch at the upcoming DefCon Conference which takes place August 4-7, 2016 in Las Vegas.

“Panasonic Avionics has always taken a proactive approach to security,” said Michael Dierickx, Director of Security Engineering and Information Security Officer at Panasonic Avionics Corporation. “We have extensive processes in place to identify potential and emerging vulnerabilities, and we also engage with security consultation firms who provide penetration testing and other services.

“Still, these teams bring a fresh perspective and innovative ways to search for potential issues. We want to harness this out-of-the-box thinking and create a win-win scenario that rewards both Panasonic and this community for our hard work and dedication.”

HackerOne partnered with the Department of Defence earlier this year for the U.S. Federal Government’s first ever bug bounty program “Hack The Pentagon,” which helped resolve 138 valid vulnerabilities identified by the ethical hackers.

“With the HackerOne platform Panasonic Avionics has access to the world’s most powerful external security team, the global hacker community, to continue enhancing the security of their internet-connected systems,” said HackerOne CEO Marten Mickos. “Inviting white hat or ethical hackers to hunt for bugs is a powerful method for making connected technology safer for everyone.”

  • Automatic advance security checks now being run on all passengers exiting Australia

Sydney, Australia | April 7, 2016– Australia’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection (the Department) is now running automated checks on all passengers departing the country. The Outward Advance Passenger Processing (APP) program uses iBorders® from SITA, the global provider of border security and IT solutions to governments, airlines and airports. SITA’s iBorders system provides real-time, integration between the airlines’ systems and the Department’s border management systems.

Outward APP, which provides interactive advanced passenger information (i-API), was put in place following legislation enacted by the Australian Government to help improve Australia’s border integrity and national security. As part of these measures, airlines are required to provide data for all travellers departing Australia in advance of their flight. The airline transmits each passenger’s data to the Department during check-in, receiving in response a ‘board’/’no board’ message in real-time. Passengers who are pre-cleared for departure through this process are allowed to quickly self-process through passport control by using the SmartGate in Australia’s international airports.

In addition to providing a more streamlined departure process using automated e-gates, the process also facilitates the identification of passengers who may be a security concern ahead of departure. SITA’s iBorders enables the Department to receive passenger data from the airlines with enough time to pre-process travellers before they arrive at the border.

John Gibbon, Assistant Secretary Traveller Branch at the Department, said: “Outward APP delivers a faster and more seamless experience for travellers, while meeting our business needs to manage threats and ensure the integrity of Australia’s border.”

SITA’s work with the Department started as a trial with a limited number of airlines. Full implementation coincided with the commencement of the Foreign Fighters legislation amendments and today the Outward APP program includes all airlines and all flights out of Australia. In total, 47 airlines are now fully certified and running around two million transactions a month through the Australian Outward APP program powered by iBorders.

Ilya Gutlin, SITA President, Asia Pacific, said: “Australia has long been recognized as a leader and innovator in the area of border management. This sophisticated Outward APP program builds on the existing solutions that SITA has been providing to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection since 2000, when the country geared up for the influx of arrivals for the Olympic Games. Working in sync with the airlines, Australia now runs advance, automatic checks on every passenger arriving or departing the country, making the journey smoother for authorized travellers while addressing issues with persons of interest.”

Around 30 governments globally use SITA’s iBorders® systems and capabilities to keep their borders secure and transform their border security operations.

  • Simple ‘click of a mouse’ will deliver instant access to Intelsat’s Globalized Network
  • Seamless integration with terrestrial networks provides ultra-high availability, redundancy and security
  • IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise delivers economies of scale and operational efficiencies and eliminates unnecessary overhead costs

Luxembourg | March 7, 2016– With nearly 4 billion people, 20 billion devices and 50 billion machines requiring broadband connectivity, corporate enterprises are looking for fast, easy and cost-efficient means to expand their MPLS or Ethernet networks in order to stay ahead of their customers’ emerging demands.

Today, Intelsat (NYSE: I), operator of the world’s first Globalized Network, powered by its leading satellite backbone, introduced IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise, a managed service that allows regional and global enterprise network service providers to efficiently access and incorporate high throughput satellite technology into new and existing private networks. The result is a high performance, secure and flexible data network platform that supports regional and global application growth, all using a web-based network operations interface.

IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise will deliver:

  • Instant Access to Intelsat EpicNG’s high speed broadband connectivity where the virtualized network will enable customers to flexibly allocate and move bandwidth to meet surges in demand or new geographic requirements.
  • Seamless Integration with terrestrial MPLS or Ethernet Networks as IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise allows customers to maintain Class of Service tags across both satellite and terrestrial components.
  • Control and Visibility to the End Terminal through a robust Network Management System (NMS) that allows service providers to: customize, prioritize and contend Mbps; offer differentiated levels of service to their end users; and maintain full control of the offering and brand. The customer portal will also provide real-time monitoring, tracking and reporting.
  • Streamlined Ground Operations through IntelsatOne Flex’s uniform performance, which enables customers to mass-order terminals in advance and take advantage of volume pricing, further simplifying and accelerating the procurement, deployment and installation of new revenue-driving remotes.
  • Significant Cost Savings through the use of smaller terminals, which are much more cost effective to purchase and maintain, even in the most remote locations.
  • Ultra-High Availability, Multi-Layer Redundancy and Security through Intelsat’s Globalized Network.

“IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise will provide our customers with the unprecedented scalability and flexibility needed to manage the complex challenges driven by the explosive demands for broadband connectivity,” said Karen Schmidt, Vice President, Marketing, Intelsat. “Unlike with other platforms, the backward compatibility of Intelsat’s Globalized Network does not require customers to replace their existing technology or switch out their ground infrastructure. As a result, customers can redeploy the cost savings and instead, focus on expanding their businesses and driving new revenue streams. Most importantly, IntelsatOne Flex for Enterprise can be easily integrated into an existing architecture and serve as a single point of entry to a virtual Globalized Network that can deliver on its promise of providing high-speed broadband and internet connectivity, whenever or wherever you need it, today.”

Washington | January 13, 2016– The TSA Pre✓ application program has reached a new milestone with more than 2 million travelers enrolled. TSA Pre✓, which opened its first application center in December 2013, now has more than 350 application centers nationwide, including locations at 38 airports.

“We are pleased to announce this milestone as the continued growth of the trusted traveler population allows us to better focus our resources on high-risk, unknown passengers, while facilitating travel for low-risk individuals,” said TSA Administrator Peter Neffenger. “We look forward to the continued expansion of TSA Pre✓ as we continue our drive towards having more travelers directly enrolled in trusted traveler programs.”

TSA Pre✓, an expedited screening program that began in October 2011, enables identified low-risk travelers to enjoy a smart and efficient screening experience. For TSA Pre✓ travelers, there is no need to remove shoes, 3-1-1 liquids, laptops, light outerwear or belts. In 2015, TSA Pre✓ operations began at 48 new airports. Today, TSA Pre✓ has more than 450 lanes at 167 U.S. airports.

The TSA Pre✓ application program allows U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents to directly apply for TSA Pre✓. Once approved, travelers will receive a “Known Traveler Number” and will have the opportunity to utilize TSA Pre✓ lanes at select security checkpoints when flying on the 13 carriers that currently participate in TSA Pre✓: Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue Airways, OneJet, Southwest Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, Virgin America and WestJet. TSA continues to work with industry to expand the number of airlines participating in TSA Pre✓.

Travelers may also enroll in one of three trusted traveler programs offered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection: Global Entry, NEXUS or SENTRI. Members of these programs are eligible to participate in TSA Pre✓ and do not need to apply separately; once successfully enrolled in a CBP trusted traveler program, participants must utilize their “PASSID” as their Known Traveler Number.

To learn more about TSA Pre✓, visit tsa.gov/tsa-precheck. For more information about the four trusted traveler programs that offer TSA Pre✓ eligibility, visit dhs.gov/tt.

  • Thompson Aerospace (TA) of Irvine, CA is offering its secure aircraft tracking/data solution as the most economical and fully compliant means to meet the new EASA rules released on December 16, 2015.

Irvine, CA | January 12, 2016– Thompson Aerospace (TA) of Irvine, CA is offering its secure aircraft tracking/data solution as the most economical and fully compliant means to meet the new EASA rules released on December 16, 2015. This solution is available to all aircraft types, with the first STC’s expected in March 2016 on B767-200, B767-300 and MD10 aircraft. The expectation is to have B777 STC’s in the second quarter of 2016 with other aircraft model types including business jets to follow during the year.

Mark Thompson noted, the new EASA regulations provides airlines options to meet the requirements: either a new real-time, robust data system or to equip the aircraft with an upgraded traditional Underwater Locating Device (ULD). While the second solution meets the requirements for this EASA rule, it does not address the core issue of what the aircraft condition is at all times. Thompson Aerospace’s view is that an advanced, secure, robust data solution providing enhanced tracking with real-time situation awareness of all systems provides more value. TA created the Secure Global Aircraft Tracking Unit to provide the economic benefits achieved by real-time information and to meet the pending rules. The solution does not rely on any aircraft system to provide location, speed, altitude, attitude (pitch, yaw, and roll), vertical velocity, and cabin pressure. This truly remarkable product uses less than 2 watts under normal operation, and can be augmented with TrueBluePower battery technology, that will allow up to 14 hours of operation in flight in the event of total power loss.

While the SGATS solution provides fully compliant EASA tracking solution, it also provides ACMS and FOQA data in real-time or after the flight, plus trend monitoring, Virtual FDR, secure key management, credit card gateway, and ability to securely send data to aircraft such as weather maps using the embedded Iridium radio.

In addressing the airline partners we believe value is important and by leveraging the latest technology the SGATS value added features will save money beyond just meeting regulatory requirements. TA understands the value of data security and in the unlikely event data needs to be examined; the secure chain of trust assures data has not been altered. The solution is based on the latest in microelectronics technology, hardware security and Iridium technology to provide airlines with the best cost advantages in the market place to replace older technology.

Most aircraft data solutions are based on OEM specifications that are technologically last generation, and while an improved beeper may meet the EASA requirements; our view is an aircraft should be at least as smart as your iPhone. The installation costs of the an enhanced ULD are very similar to SGATS, except we provide a life time warranty on the hardware

Thompson Aerospace has partnered with JANA and ALOFT AeroArchitects to provide STC’s for commercial and business aircraft. This partnership can provide STC approved kits for all model type aircraft in 2016 within six month of receiving an order.

Thompson Aerospace is a leader in securely protecting aircraft data and has securely moved over 500 million records between aircraft and secure ground locations Our patented Hardware Security Module allows us to securely move any type of data to and from an aircraft using the most reliable and secure means.

For more information contact Craig Jones, Vice President Business Development at: craigj@thompsonaerospace.com

Last year we wrote in our first issue: “Happy New Year to our readers and thank you for another year of IFE change and growth. We are always excited to write up our predictions, in fact, we have been researching for a couple of weeks now to bring you the latest in prediction news. Based on technology change, we are in for a ride this year, and beyond. Everything from drones to privacy is at risk to become a new item in 2015, and as we move into the world of change, we hope you find our view a bit different… and a bit useful.” The sentiment still holds so let’s get started on 2016. Here are a few of the big market and changes that we might see (or need) in the techno-world to come with aviation as our focus.

Messaging:
While 2016 may have a few techno-changes from 2015 and summary numbers differ, we are are riding the same messaging train! Since technology and media have grown so much (at least in the US) folks are spending more time on it than sleep or work (Business Insider), there appears to be plenty of opportunity time for messaging (Facebook, Twitter, and the like) but messaging will be even bigger. If you don’t believe it, just watch the ‘head down time’ at a public function where time is spent on devices – it’s less invasive and non interruptive.

Why is this a boom time for messaging, you might ask? The answer must lie in new, portable communication technology for one. If, as some writers predict, we spend over half of our waking day with media and technology, and because the devices and connectivity mediums are there, plain and simple, we will text. From a broader perspective, time on major digital activities will increase and has done so for each year for the last 5 years. To a greater extent, these behaviors are clearly a dominating trend and will continue to grow for the foreseeable future. Further, as folks ‘cut’ their cable TV, products are rising up in the wireless world to support streaming TV via the Internet for portable devices. Check out this FierceCable article for more information on this subject.

On aircraft, we also expect to see this increase, after all some 97% of passengers (notes SITA) have devices with Facebook Messenger, What’s App, and WeChat. These devices (and apps) and limited connectivity channels are there, all we need are more lower price solutions (free or flat fee)… and yes, there are a few on the horizon and we will discuss them this year, but we digress for now. If anything will be a big deal in inflight lifestyle changes, it will be more messaging!

Audio:
From an audio perspective, our daily life is a good predictor of what we want, and will do, on airplanes. Streaming audio is not new on the ground, with some predictors noting 4 hours of each day in that pursuit. On planes it is usually a ‘canned’ experience because connectivity to the ground is not cheap. However, with the demand of services like google Play, Amazon, MP3, NPR, Apple Music, Spotify and many more, there may be a future for advertised, real-time, streaming… if for no other reason than news. Today it’s the ‘under 17’ that spend the most streaming time but they do get older and will replace the ‘over 55’ who rely mostly on AM/FM – something to think about for your next IFE system.

Bags/Baggage:
Perhaps the past year has been better (data not out yet), but in the previous year (2014), the passenger count that lost a bag reached 24.1 million and, we note, the trend has been dropping (2007 – 18.9 lost bags per thousand pax, down 61.3% to 2014 – 7.3 lost bags per thousand pax). However with increasing load factors, increased seating and increasing traffic, it will be a real challenge for airlines to keep up. In 2014 it cost the airlines over $2 Billion for mishandled bags so the airlines are ahead of the $4.22 Billion in 2007. We also note that half of the issues were caused by transfer mishandling. Perhaps the new personal Bluetooth and Wi-Fi bag finders in conjunction with the new self bag tag programs, and the eventual electronic bag-tag programs (NFC and RFID) will reduce the loss even further in 2016. In fact, SITA has been making inroads with their BagManager baggage tracking service in 2015 and we anticipate this feature to take off in 2016.

Beacons:
We have shown a number of beacon devices in pictures from the IFE trade shows but basically we are talking about mobile location, mobile intelligence or mobile sales communication devices. These are small battery free or line powered devices that communicate with your device over Bluetooth (4.1) and Wi-Fi. The folks at SITA have been developing a lot of airport related solutions and it remains to be seen when they will come aboard planes. Developed at Apple, the iBeacon Registry is their effort to get this technology started in airports and here are their services: It allows beacon owners (airlines, airports or 3rd parties) to manage their beacon infrastructure and track where they are placed in an airport. The technology enables airports to monitor beacon deployment to prevent radio interference with existing Wi-Fi access points. It provides beacons owners with a simple mechanism to set the ‘meta-data’ associated with beacons. Also, it has an API for app developers who want to use these beacons for developing travel and other related apps. Notes SITA: “The aims of the registry are to promote the use of beacons in the Air Transport Industry and reduce the cost and complexity of deployment. This can be achieved with the following design goals:

  • Promote shared beacon infrastructure to reduce cost and complexity of deployment.
  • Introduce standard beacon types and data definition to encourage reuse.
  • Provide a simple to use API to discover beacons and get meta-data about beacons.
  • Provide tools to airport operators and beacon owners to visualize and track beacons.
  • Be vendor agnostic – the service should work with beacons from any vendor.”

Furthermore, ABI Research notes: “Research data shows that, from a beacon shipment perspective, most vendors are shipping multiple contracts in the tens of thousands. This is a major upgrade from 2014, indicating that a lot of retailers are ramping up to deploy in 2016. Although not public yet, several original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) completed funding rounds, which will enable them to grow in 2016. Sensoro is emerging as a major market player, with more than 110,000 beacons deployed in China and some major orders lined up for 2016.”

More on Beacons here

Security:
This topic is massive and we will cover it for many times to come but we wanted to share one thought from an article in informationsecurotybuzz.com – titled: Human Behavior as the Biggest Threat to Company Security. “People were reported to be ‘almost universally’ the biggest weakness in information security, ahead of technology and processes. Of the respondents that reported to have an insider threat or policy, 70% offer employee training to minimize risk.” “The company employs intelligence teams that study different aspects of communications, user activity, social media, suspicious activity and other details,” said one respondent. “We’re seeing a lot more hands-on training, employee monitoring, and testing to address the issue,” said Ari Kaplan, security researcher. In fact, this human focused trend will be the number one item at this year’s CES in Las Vegas, the show of new things:#1 Say Goodbye to Cool, Hello to Security and Safety. At CES we have come to expect the latest new shiny gadgets. There will be plenty of those this year, but that will not be the show’s main theme. The prevailing stories will center on security, safety and health services that help consumers in their daily lives.” The world is changing and aviation will be focused on this subject this year. Just consider how many folks touch technology that plugs into planes!

VR:
Don’t get too excited about virtual reality for aircraft applications. In fact, here is the view from Rick Merritt in EE Times who seems to agree: “Some people will claim virtual and augmented reality will be the next big thing in the run up to the debut of a handful of major platforms in the spring. But by fall the heat will start to fade as consumers, chilled by their high price tags and underwhelming performance, give a pass on them as gifts for Xmas 2016.” Some airlines have been flirting with the concept of VR for a number of years and have even featured the technology in their airline lounges, but we believe this technology has a long way to go before it can migrate successfully to the airborne environment, especially if motion sickness is taken into consideration!

Other:
We probably don’t need to say it but economy class will get more crowded, competition will drop air fares as competition ‘crams’ uppossibly a new ‘mini or micro’ class, there should be more mergers as more airlines take on the Delta World concept, deals and freebies will exist for the frequent fliers while the rest of the travelers will pretty much just exist inflight (if that’s possible), you will need better pre-boarding ID, Airbnb and Uber concepts will tempt a new US airline concept but the idea will be killed (this is a tough one in the US), and in the end VR may be needed after all to blunt the reality of coach class.


NEWS

Women In Aviation Intl: Tracey Curtis-Taylor successfully completed her United Kingdom to Australia flight on January 1, 2016, recreating a pioneering 1930 solo flight by Amy Johnson. Tracey departed Farnborough airport on October 1, 2015, on her solo flight in a 1942 Boeing Stearman named the Spirit of Artemis. The flight covered 13,000 miles, including 50 legs, crossing 23 countries. Tracey is a keynote speaker at the 2016 International Women in Aviation Conference March 10-12 in Nashville, TN at the Friday morning general session, expected to be attended by nearly 4,500 participants.

IFPL just announced the delivery of a one millionth peripheral to Panasonic Avionics (see the News Releases section for the full story).

We told you so…

Lastly, we are working on a few surprises for 2016, but more on this later…

  • Recent updates to website increase security removing over 50% of spam, scam, and fraudulent leads

NBAA, Las Vegas | November 18, 2015– Globalair.com announced today the launch of a new security deployment. The new enhancement was developed to curtail fraudulent email submissions. GlobalAir.com has improved the security features to include the addition of Google’s state of the art reCAPTCHA technology. These new elements have resulted in over a 50% decrease in false lead generation for aircraft for sale listings on GlobalAir.com.
Jeffrey Carrithers President and CEO explains “Our new security will not only curtail individuals from submitting erroneous submissions but more importantly disallow an automatic process known as “spiders or bots” from browsing our system and submitting thousands of inquiries. In the past 6 months we have noticed a very large uptick in scams/spam. Not only for Globalair.com but also from around the entire market place. This has become a big deal and we are determined to develop solutions to prevent this form of fraud”.

It comes at a price

With the eagerness for finding a solution Globalair.com launched and tried a variety of solutions. Unfortunately one of the solutions was not recognized until after the fact that the system completely shut down all inquires for two days. Customers and Brokers will also notice a slight decrease in the number of leads generated for aircraft listings, but will notice the quality is significantly higher.

Carrithers describes the new system, “We prefer to bring quality of leads versus quantity leads that lead to nowhere or worse. Globalair.com was the first aviation company that developed security measures to reduce the efforts of fraud by the release of an email verification system in 2011. Though the new security deployment will decrease the number of fraudulent email it comes at a price and will reduce the total number of inquiries Globalair.com sends. Our opinion is our clients want and deserve a qualified lead generation marketing tool that will allow them to confidently conduct business and sell inventory through our system. We don’t want to just send our customers dozens of leads where the majority of them are from a robot.
Security remains at the top of the list and moving forward just like the CIA and FBI Globalair.com will continually maintain watch and analysis of how to improve its products in an ever changing hazardous digital environment.

25th February 2009 – Air Italy, the dynamic charter airline, has chosen AD Aerospace, an AD Group company, to supply CabinVu-123 to improve safety and security on board its B737 aircraft. CabinVu-123 increases cockpit security by giving the pilots’ a clear view of any activity outside the cockpit door and in the adjacent galleys and therefore greatly improving their situational awareness.

“At Air Italy the safety and security of our customers is our first priority, which is why we chose CabinVu-123 from AD Aerospace” said Mr. Antenor Silva Neto, Assistant to C.E.O. & Accountable Manager of Air Italy. “We see this as the best choice as it provides high quality and reliability at a good price, just as we do.”

CabinVu-123, the popular choice for cockpit door surveillance, provides pilots with a forward looking, clear and unobstructed view of the area outside the cockpit door and in the adjacent galleys from their usual seated positions. A series of cameras are linked to either one or two monitors and associated controllers within easy reach of the pilots for ease and comfort of use.

With the view provided by the system the pilots can visually identify anyone requesting entry and take appropriate action, should an incident arise. This is in line with recommendations from ICAO Annex 6, EUROCAE ED-123 and provides compliance with EU-OPS 1.1255 Sub Part S, FAA 14 CFR 121.313(k) and 14 CFR 121.584 (a). CabinVu-123 is also good for operators due to its low weight and simple installation.

“Air Italy is a very welcome addition to the family of airlines across Europe and the World fitting AD Aerospace safety and security systems,” said Mike Horne, Managing Director, AD Aerospace Ltd. “As an exciting and growing force in Italian and European aviation we are extremely pleased to have won Air Italy’s business.”

FlightVu equipment has been or is being installed on aircraft for Europe Airpost, Boeing, airBaltic, Austrian Airlines, GECAS, ILFC, , Neos, Privilege, Orient Thai, Comair, Hong Kong Express, Hong Kong Airways, bmi, British Airways, JetBlue, Thomsonfly, Air Asia, Corsair, easyJet, Hainan, Germania, TUIfly, Sama and MyTravel amongst others.