Airbus Helicopters has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with SkyTrac that will enable helicopters equipped with its real-time data processing and communications hardware to transmit their aircraft and flight data directly to servers on the ground, ensuring the continuous flow of data from the air to the ground for analysis.
Through the partnership, SkyTrac hardware certified through a supplemental type certificate (STC) will interface directly with customer and Airbus servers, allowing customers to better manage their fleets and maintenance planning. The data collected will also join the growing pool that Airbus is collecting with its partners, and will become another data source for Airbus analytics which help to optimise costs, enhance safety and increase availability.
“Our collaboration with data processing providers is about enabling an uninterrupted data pipeline between the aircraft, the manufacturer and the operator,” says Airbus Helicopters head of connected services Stephanie Bonnefoy-Fourie. “Our goal is to drive safety, value and availability for our customers. By opening new pathways and collectively pooling the rich data available, we help operators gain greater visibility into their day-to-day operations and access new tools and analytics for pilot and crew.”
“SkyTrac is pleased to work with Airbus on this new data delivery solution. We recognise the great potential of data to bring greater value to our customers, especially those in emergency medical services, search and rescue, and oil and gas. We're happy to play a role in unlocking this by setting up interfaces between our hardware and Airbus systems,” adds SkyTrac vice president of sales Jan van der Heul.
SkyTrac's robust third generation hardware combines onboard computing with satcom, wi-fi and cellular connectivity to enable inflight communication, monitor aircraft activity inflight, send real-time safety and maintenance alerts and streamline post-flight data management.
Today around 600 helicopters are sharing data with Airbus Helicopters. They represent just about every helicopter type in Airbus' range and perform a wide variety of missions.