MEMBER ALERT: AOPA will be closing at 1:45 p.m. Eastern on Dec. 6 and will reopen at 8:30 a.m. Eastern on Dec. 9.
January 12, 2011
By Dan Namowitz
The FAA says that technicians have regained control over a Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) satellite that began to malfunction last spring and was taken out of service last month.
A series of tests is proceeding to determine when the Galaxy 15/CRW satellite’s signals may become usable again for navigation.
“Intelsat and the satellite builder, Orbital Sciences Corporation, believe they have isolated the cause of the failure and have implemented corrective actions that will serve to prevent recurrence in the satellite (also known as Intelsat CRW). Intelsat is highly confident that the cause of failure has been fixed,” said the FAA in a Jan. 6 news release on its Navigation Service Web page.
The satellite is being repositioned for diagnostic tests, during which time the signal will transmit in a test mode, and be unusable for navigation.
AOPA reported on Dec, 28, 2010, on the decision to discontinue the satellite’s use for navigation, and the impact on routings and airports in northwestern Alaska.
After testing the Galaxy 15 will be returned to its original orbital location of 133 degrees west “or to another position close by. The Galaxy 15 should arrive at this final location in early March 2011,” said the FAA’s news update.
The FAA said that if test results prove favorable, it might resume transmitting the WAAS signal before the satellite reaches its final orbital position.
Aircraft and Avionics,
Advocacy and Legislation
A House bill that would force FAA to go through the rulemaking process before imposing new policies for sleep disorders has passed a key committee.
The House has passed a bill requiring the TSA to consult stakeholders, including general aviation representatives, before making major changes to security policy.
Senators are demanding a written response from the Department of Homeland Security about unwarranted stops of general aviation aircraft by DHS and Customs and Border Protection.
AOPA thanks our members for their continued support in protecting the freedom to fly.