We’re bringing the digital revolution to the flight deck

Collins Aerospace, and SITA FOR THE AIRCRAFT have signed strategic agreements with Inmarsat to bring ground-breaking new SB-S solution to the global air transport industry.

Flight deck safety, security and operational efficiency will all be enhanced by the introduction of Inmarsat’s SB-S (SwiftBroadband-Safety). Small, light, and secure – and suitable for both single-aisle and wide-bodied aircraft – SB-S is revolutionising every cockpit it’s connected to.

Ground-breaking benefits

SB-S brings all the benefits of high-speed broadband to the cockpit, enhancing the amount of data that can flow on and off the Electronic Flight Bags (EFB), for real-time in-flight updates, to Graphical Weather (GW), for innovative enhanced situational awareness.

Also, crucially, an ultra-secure communications system for the flight deck that meets tough aviation requirements for safety and operational data exchange with the ground. The SB-S hardware is also small, which saves space and weight, reducing fuel burn. 

Lasting partnerships

SITA FOR THE AIRCRAFT is well positioned to partner with Inmarsat as the two companies have been providing world-leading cockpit services to more than 90% of the world’s trans-oceanic wide-body aircraft fleet for more than 25 years.

SITA FOR THE AIRCRAFT currently provides communication services to more than 16,000 aircraft worldwide. It currently integrates Inmarsat’s Classic Aero and SwiftBroadband satellite communications solutions into its systems.

Paul Gibson, Portfolio Director, AIRCOM at SITA FOR THE AIRCRAFT, said: “We’re delighted to extend our relationship with Inmarsat and be able to add SB-S to our portfolio of integrated aircraft communications services. SB-S will prove critical in connecting existing cockpit applications and unleash potential as the industry is able to develop new applications and services around a dedicated secure IP connection to the cockpit.”

Captain Mary McMillan, Vice President of Aviation Safety and Operational Services at Inmarsat Aviation, said: “We have worked closely with SITA FOR THE AIRCRAFT over the past 25 years to offer world-leading safety and operational efficiency satcom solutions to airlines. This will drive the adoption of digital flight deck technology and deliver unsurpassed operational efficiencies and enhanced safety throughout the global aviation industry.”

Innovative technological implementation

Collins Aerospace has also worked closely with Inmarsat for many years, providing and managing Inmarsat’s market-leading cockpit services to a majority of the world’s transoceanic wide-body and business aircraft fleet. Under the exciting new agreement, Collins Aerospace will collaborate with airlines to implement the pioneering digital SB-S technology on future and existing fleets.

“The advent of the next generation ‘connected cockpit’ brings with it a new set of requirements in terms of service reliability, availability and security for aviation communications,” said Michael DiGeorge, Vice President of Commercial Aviation and Network Services at Collins Aerospace.

Captain Mary McMillan, said: “This new distribution agreement with our valued strategic partner Collins Aerospace marks a huge milestone in our strategy to bring the digital revolution to the flight deck. We look forward to working with Collins Aerospace on this important paradigm shift, together helping the global air transport industry to integrate digital technology in the cockpit. This 21st century concept of operations will be powered by the high-speed, cost-effective capabilities of SB-S and the new applications and services it enables.”

I’m excited for pilots who are going to be using this communications platform. It changes everything for them, especially when it comes to weather and the ability to plan their routes most effectively, efficiently, and safely.”

Captain McMillan adds that SB-S provides crucial additional tools to the aviation community: “I’m really thrilled about this milestone, and so far, SB-S has exceeded our expectations.”