Gogo grows ATG subscriber base

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Gogo expects to end 2020 with more business aviation air-to-ground (ATG) subscribers (5,669) than it had when the year began (5,700+).

“We have an incredibly strong and resilient business,” said Sergio Aguirre, Gogo’s Business Aviation President. “This year has been such a difficult challenge, but our rapid recovery proves that in-flight connectivity and entertainment are must-haves for today’s private aviation passengers.”

The company has had a significant increase in new system installations in the third and fourth quarters compared to the second quarter, including a notable increase in AVANCE sales in December versus previous months. Gogo now has more than 1,150 AVANCE L5 and more than 500 AVANCE L3 systems installed and flying.

According to a statement, charter operations are back at nearly 100%, with activity online and megabytes consumed increased dramatically. Seventy-eight per cent of those who suspended their service have unsuspended and 92% of those who downgraded plans have either returned to their original plan or upgraded to a higher plan. Combined, 75% of those who had suspended or downgraded their plan have moved back to their original plan or upgraded.

“From an operational standpoint, like everyone else, we had to make some significant modifications to adjust to the pandemic, and we did that fairly quickly,” Aguirre continued. “We have not missed a single delivery on new equipment or on any repairs during the pandemic. Our people really rose to that challenge, and we continued to innovate.”

Gogo AVANCE L3 installs grow to 500+

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More than 500 business aircraft have installed the Gogo AVANCE L3 in-flight connectivity system.

From the time AVANCE L3 launched in January 2018, more than 120,000 flights have been flown with the system onboard. Gogo has shipped nearly 700 AVANCE L3 systems to date.

“We have seen demand for in-flight connectivity increase across the board, but we’re seeing significant growth on smaller aircraft,” said Sergio Aguirre, President of Gogo Business Aviation. “Despite the pandemic, we’ve seen continued installations of the AVANCE L3, and to reach 500 aircraft online in this environment is a remarkable achievement. It speaks volumes about how important connectivity has become to operators today. It’s no longer considered a luxury – it’s now a necessity for most, even on smaller aircraft.”

Aguirre added: “During the pandemic, connectivity like the AVANCE L3 provides has become even more valuable for many operators because they are relying more heavily on their business aircraft to provide a safer, more secure travel environment that is healthier for passengers and crew.”

There are numerous certification paths to install the AVANCE L3 including full equipment STCs and Wi-Fi STCs covering more than a hundred aircraft models. The system is actively being installed at several MROs and aftermarket OEM service centres.

AVANCE L3 can be enabled to connect to the Gogo Biz data network delivering a 3G experience. The L3 also allows passengers to stay connected to email; send text messages and make voice calls with Gogo Text & Talk; and comes equipped with Gogo Vision 360 for unlimited streaming of on-demand movies, TV programming and news, along with digital magazines and a state-of-the-art 3D moving map, all at a fixed monthly price.

Inmarsat GX5 rendering

Inmarsat’s GX5 satellite ushers in news era for GX Aviation and Jet ConneX (JX) in-flight Wi-Fi services

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Inmarsat GX5 rendering

GX5, Inmarsat’s newest and most advanced satellite to date has entered into commercial service serving the aviation needs of Europe and the Middle East.

The satellite’s orbital position, at 11° East, provides an optimal position for European connectivity services and has been designed specifically for regional demand and air traffic patterns over Europe and the Middle East’s busiest airspaces.

GX5 is the 14th satellite currently in service with Inmarsat and heralds the start of a major development programme to enhance the GX network’s capacity and capabilities.

According to Inmarsat, GX5 delivers approximately twice the capacity of the entire existing GX satellite fleet (GX1-GX4) combined.

GX5 is designed to provide connectivity services to existing GX terminals, whilst providing a step change in connectivity for next generation terminals being introduced in the near future.

Philip Balaam, President of Inmarsat Aviation, said: “We are delighted to take the next step in this ambitious roadmap with GX5’s entry into commercial service. This is our most powerful satellite to date, delivering more capacity over Europe and the Middle East than the four existing GX satellites combined. In addition to transforming the quality of aviation connectivity today, it will ensure that our customers remain at the cutting-edge of technology innovation as their needs evolve and air traffic recovers in 2021 and beyond.”

Inmarsat’s technology roadmap will see seven further launches by 2024: five in geostationary orbit – adding speed, capacity and resilience – and two in highly elliptical orbit, which will enable the world’s only commercial mobile broadband service in the commercially and strategically critical Arctic region.

VVIP aircraft entering a hangar for Greenpoint Technologies

Greenpoint reasserts VVIP Boeing 787 completion credentials

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VVIP aircraft entering a hangar for Greenpoint Technologies

Greenpoint Technologies has completed its latest VVIP Boeing 787-8 interior completion to an undisclosed client.

To date, Greenpoint has contracted six VVIP Boeing 787 programs and completed four.

Working closely with the client’s representatives, Greenpoint crafted the bespoke cabin which features state-of-the-art technology and in-flight entertainment and is finished with what Greenpoint says is “an attention to detail beyond a typical V-VIP completion.”

The interior caters to this particular client’s needs with open, multi-functional living space and distinct, private rooms.

Klaus Koester, CEO of Greenpoint Technologies and the Custom Cabin Division of Safran Passenger Solutions, states: “This delivery represents a continuation of Greenpoint’s unmatched 787 accomplishments. More importantly, our entire team is both humbled and grateful to work with such an amazing client, and we thank all involved for their dedication and hours spent to support this success.”

Schematic of ALTO OnDemand Audio layout

ALTO Aviation delivers VIP audio experience

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Schematic of ALTO OnDemand Audio layout

ALTO Aviation has introduced its new ALTO On-Demand Audio Optimisation feature.

The On-Demand Audio Optimisation feature allows a particular seat or section of the aircraft to receive the VIP Audio treatment. At the touch of a button or swipe on the Alto remote control app, the selected seat can be placed right at the center of the action. The bass from all the subwoofer can be digitally focused for maximum impact.

The Mid-High speakers are time-aligned and individually equalised for a perfect sweet spot at the VIP’s ears. The speakers behind the VIP seat can provide the surround channels for an ideal surround sound cinema immersion.

“Our new System Master Controller will be able to dynamically control the DSP in our amplifiers to set up custom EQ configurations on demand. The sound profiles can reflect a VIP seat eccentric audio configuration setting, including surround sound and spatially balanced speakers. This approach will allow us to retroactively repurpose previous ALTO audio systems with these new features with minimal changes to the architecture,” commented Kevin Hayes, ALTO Aviation VP Sales & Marketing.

Schemtic of ALTO Aviation 3D Immersive Media Zone

ALTO gives audio immersion to every passenger

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Schemtic of ALTO Aviation 3D Immersive Media Zone

Following an increase in customer requests for a large credenza mounted video monitor across a 4-place seating group or luxury divan in medium, large, and VVIP business jets, ALTO Aviation has introduced its ALTO 3D Immersive Media Zone audio system.

Featuring a 6.2 channel, 3-D Immersive sound experience, the front stage is set with PSU mounted Left, Center, and Right loudspeakers. The immersive surround image is provided by Surround-Left, Surround-Center, and Surround-Right loudspeakers mounted behind the passengers. Two Powerful and compact subwoofers mounted beneath the seats or divan or bulkheads provide ample bass.

The new ALTO 3D Immersive Media Zone Audio System is currently available in select OEM offerings, requiring minimal work.

“Our R&D and engineering divisions designed the new ALTO 3D immersive audio system to provide the most powerful and amazing audiophile experience in the media zone of the cabin. The result is outstanding. The sound is crystal-clear, and the 3D immersive experience is unrivalled in our industry. We are confident that we will wow our customers with this top-notch audiophile entertainment offering,” said Steve Scarlata, ALTO Aviation VP Engineering / R&D.

Duncan Aviation's ACA ionisation system

Duncan Aviation develops ACA installation package

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Duncan Aviation's ACA ionisation system

Duncan Aviation’s Engineering & Certification Services and Parts Manufacturer Approval (PMA) departments have created an installation package for the Aviation Clean Air (ACA) ionisation system for Challenger 300 and 350 aircraft.

The packages include everything necessary for installing the ACA Ioniser system, including the Supplemental Type Certificate (STC), the ionisers, and PMA parts kits.

“Although our facility in Lincoln, Nebraska, has been modifying the air ducts for the installation, any of Duncan Aviation’s three main facilities or many of the company’s 27 Satellite Shops, are able to perform the necessary modifications prior to installing the ACA Ioniser system,” commented Pat Mapes, Manager of Avionics Install & Avionics Line. “When we say the kit includes everything, we mean every screw, nut, bolt, and switch necessary for the installation.”

The teams have also created ACA Ionisation installation packages for the Global models. Kits are currently available for those aircraft and can also be installed at any of the three main Duncan Aviation facilities or Satellite Shops. Additional STCs and PMA kits are in work for the Falcon 2000 and 7X models and should be available in the coming months.

Designed to be installed in an aircraft’s existing environmental control system, the ACA ionisers operate in the aircraft’s ductwork. The ionised hydrogen molecules neutralise pathogens and remove allergens and unpleasant odours, including those from pets, cigarette and cigar smoke, engine exhaust, cooking, lavatories, and VOCs (volatile organic compounds).

In May 2020, testing conducted by independent lab Innovative BioAnalysis found the ACA ioniser effective at rendering harmless the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The lab test showed that 99.4% of the virus particles were inactivated within 30 minutes. The system has been tested and proven to kill the coronavirus that caused SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), as well.

On Air catering van outside Inflite the Jet FBO at Stanstead Airport

On Air Dining to serve Inflite The Jet Centre

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On Air catering van outside Inflite the Jet FBO at Stanstead Airport

On Air Dining is to become the new inhouse service provider for Inflite The Jet Centre (ITJC), part of the Inflite Group of companies, based at London Stansted Airport.

On Air Dining will continue to offer Halal food, catering for an expanded Middle East client base.  It has two high loaders servicing wide-body business jets, one based at Stansted, the other at Farnborough Airport. Its team of chefs has also enhanced and expanded its plant-based menus, in response to widening dietary needs.

On Air Dining will continue to produce its high-end takeaway business One Fine Dine, an innovative cold food kit you assemble and cook at home. Created this Spring, during the first lockdown, serving customers in London and the Home Counties, One Fine Dine appeals to home-based chefs, who occasionally want to create something special for family and friends.

AMAC MRO facility Geneva

AMAC enjoys demand for onboard connectivity

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AMAC MRO facility Geneva

AMAC Aerospace is preparing to install a Gogo 2Ku in-flight system on widebody aircraft on behalf of an undisclosed customer.

The system comprises two antennas, one for the forward link, which transmits data to the aircraft, and another antenna for the return link, which receives the data.

In addition, a Boeing BBJ737 will be equipped with a Ka-band antenna and will undergo a due maintenance.

“We realise that a perfect onboard connectivity is very important for our customers. With our existing STC capabilities, we are happy to offer our customers an incomparable and high-speed internet experience on their aircraft”, said Eric Hoegen, Director Completion Sales & Key Account Management.

In October, AMAC was selected to carry out a Pre-Purchase Inspection (‘PPI’) on two privately-owned Bombardier Global 6000s. AMAC also won a project for a 24-month inspection on a Bombardier Challenger 300 in September. The customer commissioned AMAC to perform multiple cabin interior work on the privately-owned aircraft.

ACI Jet Challenger 604 HD upgrade

ACI Jet completes in-flight entertainment upgrade

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ACI Jet Challenger 604 HD upgrade

California-based business jet maintenance, repair and overhaul provider, ACI Jet has completed the first installation of HD video conversion hardware on a Challenger 604 aircraft from its Bombardier authorised service facility (ASF).

The company completed the installation of Innovative Advantage’s AVDS Node Box on a 2005 Challenger 604 during a visit which included other cabin upgrades and modifications. For in-flight connectivity, the existing Gogo Biz classic ATG system was upgraded to Gogo’s Avance L5 4G internet, enabling Gogo Vision on the newly installed Innovative Advantage system. Within the cabin, two brand new HD Rosen displays were added, replacing the existing Baker standard definition LCD monitors.

“This Innovative Advantage IFE backbone unlocks something totally unique in that it offers an incremental approach to upgrading your cabin experience,” stated Brian Ford, avionics manager for ACI Jet. “The system is capable of anything as small as a single device upgrade for high-definition video up through a multi-device, multi-hub cabin management system and anything and everything in between.”

“The aircraft owners we represent almost universally demand that the finer touches be accounted for when servicing their aircraft,” stated Dave Jensen, ACI Jet’s SVP of aircraft maintenance. “Whether coming out of paint or meeting with interior designers to ensure that every pattern, every material and the sources that we are using meet their exact specifications, they have an eye for detail. Astonishingly, standard definition video on ageing, small displays is often the first impression when boarding, and our clients are recognising this. They now have a turnkey option to make their in-flight entertainment experience match their exacting standards, and it happens to be quite affordable.”