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The Full Potential of Connected Aerospace – We’ve Just Scratched the Surface

The Full Potential of Connected Aerospace – We’ve Just Scratched the Surface

Lost to history is the name of the first person to make a phone call or send an email from 35,000 feet. But I doubt that even the most visionary satellite communications pioneers realized the potential of connectivity to impact the entire aerospace industry.

Today flight crews use connectivity to develop flight plans, preview runways and get real-time weather updates. Passengers connect to ground-quality Wi-Fi anywhere they fly. Maintenance teams check the performance and health of aircraft systems. Dispatchers drive better on-time performance. Operations teams monitor and save fuel. Ground crews reduce turn-around time. And much more.

Connected aerospace is a modern miracle that makes flying safer, more efficient and more comfortable. But, as far as we’ve come in recent years, I’m convinced we’ve just scratched the surface of the enormous potential of connected aerospace. The near future will bring even more opportunities and more tangible benefits to civilian and military operators and the flying public.

Connected aerospace is a big part of Honeywell’s identity. In fact, Honeywell is the only company that provides all three elements of the total connected aircraft solution. It’s analogous to your smartphone in the sense that in both cases you need hardware, an airtime plan and applications.

Our satellite communications hardware enables data to move both ways between the aircraft and the ground. We offer a wide range of SATCOM systems to meet the needs of both flight crews and passengers. A great example is the Honeywell JetWave system, which represents a real breakthrough in satellite communications technology.

JetWave provides users with in-flight Wi-Fi that is fast, reliable, secure and available anywhere you fly, even on international or transoceanic flights. Our JetWave hardware connects with the Inmarsat Global Xpress satellite constellation using the Ka-Band, which enables a Wi-Fi experience comparable to the one you have in your home or office – including the ability to stream live video and send huge data files. We’ve sold more than 1,300 JetWave systems so far.

Since our acquisition of Satcom1 in 2015, Honeywell has grown to become the second-largest provider of in-flight airtime services. Today we offer a wide range of flexible, affordable plans to meet your specific needs, whether you’re connecting using JetWave and the Ka-Band, a Ku-Band system, Swiftbroadband or another option. Our airtime packages make sure you stay connected and control your costs wherever you fly.

You can realize the full potential of connected aerospace with smart, easy-to-use applications from Honeywell and our industry-leading Honeywell Forge Solutions. Examples include GoDirect Cabin, which keeps passengers productive and entertained. Honeywell Forge Flight Efficiency uses advanced analytics to reduce fuel consumption 3-4 percent. Honeywell Forge Connected Maintenance delivers prescriptive and predictive data that improve safety and reduce maintenance costs. And our new GoDirect Ground Handling solution improves efficiency and makes turnarounds a breeze.

The innovators at Honeywell are constantly developing new applications and looking for ways to improve our connected aerospace product, services and software solutions. I’m proud of what they’ve accomplished, but I’m confident that there’s much more to come. Stay tuned!

Ben Driggs
President of Connected Aerospace
Ben Driggs is President of Connected Aerospace at Honeywell. Prior to taking this role in 2018, he served in a variety of positions with Honeywell including President, Americas Aftermarket; President, Honeywell Latin America; Vice President, Aerospace Asia Pacific; and Vice President of Propulsion Engines. Before joining Honeywell, Ben was an Associate Principal with the consulting firm McKinsey and Company. He holds a master’s degree from Oxford University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Arizona.


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