The tedious but necessary world of aircraft electronics specifications were a topic of the last WAEA Single Focus Workshop and Boeing’s Gerald Lui-Kwan (Boeing Cabin Systems Tech Center) did a yeoman’s job of covering the areas of activity that Airbus and Boeing both participate in via ARINC and AEEC associations. Our industry technical professionals deal in this world on a regular basis, however, we thought all our readers might like to see Gerald’s list of current committee projects that affect connectivity – some are really going to be big deals. First, here is the list:


1. A-741, A-761, A-781-3, These all deal with Inmarsat Communication
2. A-821 The Aircraft Network Server Functional System (NSS) Description.
3. A-822-1 The Air/Ground IP Communication spec. (Gatelink).
4. A824 – On-Board Mobile Telephony Specification (Recently Adopted)

Project Papers (In-Work Specifications)

5. A-791 – Ku Band Satellite System
6. A-830 – Aircraft /Ground Information Exchange System (AGIES)
7. A-830 – Wireless Distribution
8. MAGIC – Manager of Air Ground Interface Communications

Technical Application Bulletin

Network Security Bulletin

If you are a member of the WAEA, be sure to check out his presentation on the WAEA website. The block diagrams of the scope of this work is really impressive!

If you do an Internet search, we found it best to type your search as follows; “arinc/aeec project paper a-791”. We should also note that the one of the advantages of these groups and specification development programs is in the protocol level whereby various users (like in A-830) can enable multiple, different platforms to communicate by only building or modifying drivers and avoiding physical or hardware layer disturbances – this translates to shorter development times and lower cost of entry.

The last two items “MAGIC” and Network Security efforts are going to be big deals. “Magic” because it affects virtually all data whizzing around the airplane and may entail whole new ways of looking at aircraft data, hardware, and software controls affecting link management, traffic management, and information exchange. Network Security, well, that is an area that one can experience on their own PC. Security in data networks on the ground are routinely attacked by hackers of all sorts… now imagine that business on your plane at 35,000 feet. Scary!

On another but possibly related, check out this story on Endgadget about exploding iPods. Now, imagine the ramifications if this happened on an airplane.

Footnote: By the way and FYI, the Boeing Cabin Systems Technical Center is responsible for equipment management all of the Cabin equipment for Boeing airplanes e.g. Cabin Services (PA, Cabin Interphone, Lights, Passenger Services), In-Flight Entertainment Systems and the On-Board Network Systems.