Aspire to a Better Connected Helicopter Experience

August 27, 2019 | Author: Mark Goodman

The age of the connected helicopter has arrived. Regardless of their mission, helicopter operators are tapping into the power of connectivity to improve operations, maintenance and communications.

There are several ways to get voice and data on and off the helicopter. One of the most commonly used is the tried-and-true SwiftBroadband network, which uses the Inmarsat satellite constellation. Including our signature Aspire family of satellite communications systems, Honeywell has delivered more than 10,000 SwiftBroadband systems for use on helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft.

The Aspire 200 is suited to meet helicopter operators’ need for speed. In fact, it’s the fastest SwiftBroadband solution available today, with speeds up to 650 kbps using a single channel and our high data rate (HDR) solution.

With the HDR upgrade, the Aspire 200 terminal will perform as much as 100 times faster than the best systems previously available. The HDR upgrade also includes specialized interleaver waveform to compensate for rotor blockage and enable seamless broadband connectivity.

There’s some chatter in the helicopter industry today about the relative merits of various connectivity solutions, including those operating on SwiftBroadband like the Aspire 200 HDR and X-Stream. 

Aspire 200 also supports SwiftBroadband X-Stream services, but the HDR solution is faster and more reliable for the helicopter environment. It provides forward-error correction to automatically replace data lost due to rotor blockage, without suffering the latency caused by application layer corrections when using X-Stream or other SwiftBroadband services. In addition, the Honeywell Aspire 200 HDR solution is 40 percent more efficient than the X-Stream solution, offsetting any difference in per-minute cost.

Honeywell’s HSD-400 voice and high-speed data transceiver adds even higher levels of speed and performance, with multichannel connectivity and speeds up to 1.3 Mbps; 2.6 Mbps with the use of a channel extension box.

As the connectivity evolution continues, our goal is to provide the hardware, software and expertise to provide operators the ability to reliably connect their helicopters and achieve their missions under even the most challenging operating conditions.   

Mark Goodman

Mark Goodman

Mark Goodman leads the Honeywell Cockpit Satcom portfolio, promoting L-band Satcom products across all verticals. Mark has led technical teams and managed programs for first of type Satcom products for over 20 years at Honeywell.

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