Standards Oversight Committee Acts on Safety and Emerging Technologies

July 1, 2019

Standards Oversight Committee Acts on Safety and Emerging Technologies


Washington, DC, June 28, 2019 – RTCA’s Program Management Committee (PMC) held its summer meeting approving four critical guidance documents, reviewing workplans for the Special Committees (SC), and incorporating changes to the various committee Terms of Reference (TOR) that reflect leadership and work plan changes.

Chaired by Chris Hegarty of The MITRE Corporation, the 19-member PMC is the RTCA oversight body charged with producing timely and robust standards and guidance documents to ensure interoperability of aviation systems and equipment. The standards encourage innovation and serve as the basis for meeting Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations. An important responsibility of the PMC is ensuring the operational application of the technical standards.

The Members of the PMC approved four standards covering the following areas:

  • Definition for Signal-in-Space for the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) based Local Area Augmentation System (LAAS). The LAAS has global application as a Ground-Based Augmentation System (GBAS) to GNSS.  This Interface Control Document (ICD) was maintained to be backward compatible with all LAAS MOPS compliant equipment by applicable FAA TSOs. It was prepared by SC-159 (Navigation Equipment Using the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)).
  • The Minimum Operational Performance Standards (MOPS) for GPS Local Area Augmentation System Airborne Equipment primarily includes changes to the GBAS VHF Data Broadcast (VDB) receiver adjacent channel rejection requirements and the associated test procedures, as well as the rationale for the VDB requirements resulting from coordination of the frequency compatibility with the ICAO Navigation Systems Panel. It was prepared by SC-159 (Navigation Equipment Using the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS)).
  • A MOPS to consider an equipment configuration consisting of the airborne processing and cockpit display of aeronautical and meteorological data known as FIS-B provided by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Functions or components that refer to equipment capabilities that exceed the stated minimum requirements are identified as optional features. It was prepared by SC-206 (Aeronautical Information and Meteorological Data Link).
  • And a new MASPS for Coexistence of Wireless Avionics Intra-Communication within 4200-4400 MHz defines two Performance Requirements (PR) was compiled to ensure WAIC systems meet the titled coexistence criteria.  It specifies metrics to verify the aggregate power spectral flux density and interference susceptibility of WAIC systems. And this MASPS provides an acceptable means to demonstrate compliance along with corresponding pass/fail criteria. It was prepared jointly by SC-236 and EUROCAE WG-96 (Standards for Wireless Avionics Intra-Communication System

The Committee also approved changing three committees to Active Monitor Status: SC-217 (Joint Aeronautical Databases), SC-227 (Standards of Navigation Performance), and SC-229 (406 MHz Emergency Locator Transmitters (ELTs)); as well as administrative changes to SC-236 (Standards for Wireless Avionics Intra-Communication System (WAIC) within 4200-4400 MHz) and SC-230 (Airborne Weather Detection Systems).  


Six special committees received approval for changes to their work plans.  These included SC-147 – Aircraft Collision Avoidance Systems, SC-186 – Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B), SC-209 – Minimum Operational Performance Standards for ATCRBS/Mode S Transponder, SC-214 – Standards for Air Traffic Data Communication Services, SC-216 – Aeronautical Information Systems Security, and SC-222 – Aeronautical Mobile Satellite (Route) Services AMS(R)S.


Details from the June 27, 2019 PMC meeting are contained in a letter from Chairman Hegarty to FAA Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety, Ali Bahrami.