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Aircraft Tracking & Communications

INDUSTRIAL SOLUTIONS
 

Objective

Prior to this project, a large petroleum products company's pipeline control center only knew the position of aircraft within several hours, which equates to several hundred miles. If an aircraft went down, the search radius would be too large to facilitate a quick rescue. Additionally, communications between the dispatchers and the aircraft were very unreliable. This project determined how to resolve these two problems and brought additional unexpected benefits.




Process

  • Work with the customer to articulate their requirements
  • Determine which technologies could solve their problems
  • Write and issue an RFI
  • Lead the RFI evaluation
  • Develop a test plan
  • Test the top two technologies
  • Recommend a way forward



The Plan Takes Flight

Our customer implemented the system as recommended and it provides significant benefits beyond real-time tracking and voice communications. The chief pilot and our staff tested the system over a period of days. We determined that with a few minor software and hardware enhancements it would be possible for the pilot to enter codes indicating hazardous conditions spotted on the right-of-way and have those conditions immediately show up on the dispatchers' real-time maps. We worked with the vendor to complete the necessary enhancements and now the patrol planes are equipped with this system.

 
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