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Aircraft Tracking


DEC14 EC Proposal on Aircraft Tracking Systems

Latest update 20 January 2016


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Latest update 20/01/2016: On 16 December 2015 The European Commission adopted new rules for flight recorders, underwater locating devices and aircraft tracking systems, addressing the issues raised by the accident of AF447 and the disappearance of MH370. The new rules concern aircraft tracking systems, underwater locating devices and flight recorders. The main elements include:

  • Operators of large aeroplanes must establish, as part of the system for exercising operational control over the flight, an aircraft tracking system.
  • Newly manufactured large aeroplanes are to be equipped "with robust and automatic means" to accurately locate the end point of flight following an accident in which the aeroplane is severely damaged. This is to prevent the disappearance of an aeroplane where all communications and its track are lost abruptly.
  • The technology of flight recorders will be enhanced, and the recording length of the Cockpit Voice Recorder (CVR) will be extended from 2 hours to 25 hours. The protection of CVR recordings will be reinforced, in particular during their maintenance. Finally flight recorders will be equipped with locating devices with an extended transmission time so as to facilitate their localisation.