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RTCA February 2021 Digest

February 18, 2021
Home / News / RTCA February 2021 Digest

SC-186 Continues Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast Development

Special Committee 186 (SC-186) is reactivating working group 5 to update the Universal Access Transceiver (UAT) Minimum Operational Performance Standard (MOPS). UAT is one of the two types of ADS-B surveillance systems for aircraft operating in the U.S.  The other, 1090 Extended Squitter (1090ES), also recently published its third version of MOPS.  The goal of this committee is to bring the UAT standard to be in synch with some of the new capabilities added to 1090ES.

Both surveillance systems transmit real-time data of an aircraft’s location, velocity and direction of flight, along with other data.  ADS-B, the FAA’s preferred mode of aircraft surveillance today, also has the capacity for air-to-ground and air-to-air applications, informing both pilots and controllers of the location of other aircraft and information such as weather.  By January, 1, 2020, all aircraft had to have ADS-B equipment in order to operate in higher density airspace in the U.S.

When referring to UAT development and working group 5, “we’ve always been strong, proactive and innovative,” said Rob Strain, of the MITRE Corporation.  “What we’re doing here with updates to the MOPS will help aircraft with planning and predictability.  It will maintain consistency amongst our standards and the additional capability these systems provide will result in better air traffic services.”

The UAT working group, composed of around a dozen industry professionals, will begin meeting on January 28th.  It is chaired by Strain. The group expects to complete MOPS by March 2022.

Committee News

SC-186 ADS-B, Working Group 5 (UAT) met in a working session on January 28 for the first time to begin planning the updates for DO-282B. While not a plenary session, this is a new activity for this working group and is a follow on to the successful work the committee accomplished updating DO-361, DO-317, and DO-260C in 2020.

See all committee news.

Training Updates

DO-160G, this course will provide an understanding of the use of DO-160G and how it fits in with the greater picture of requirements, design, certification and Technical Standard Orders (TSOs). Participants will gain an understanding of the applicable FAA regulations, advisory material, certification procedures, inspection and conformity requirements, as well as details of the necessary parts of a test plan, test report, compliance plan/report.

See more updates.

Announcement on Aviation Conference:

ICNS 2021 Conference will be virtual this year

The Integrated Communications Navigation and Surveillance (ICNS) Conference, focused on the future of ATM and other current aviation issues, will be held virtually this year April 20-23 from 9:00am to 2:00pm each day. The 2021 ICNS Conference theme is “Agility and Sustainability: Embracing Rapid Evolution and Uncertainty.” Plenary Sessions include:

·       Global Harmonization: New Opportunities and Unforeseen Issues

·       The Future Trajectory for ATC

·     Evolving ICNS Technologies for Drones, AAM, and Beyond

Registration is required.  There is no charge to attend. Visit the ICNS website: https://i-cns.org) for more details including registration, information on past ICNS conferences and access to previous proceedings. The ICNS conference is endorsed by the FAA, EUROCONTROL, NASA, IEEE and AIAA.

Brent Phillips, a Senior Systems Engineer with the FAA, the Government Authorized Representative for RTCA SC-223, and member of the ICNS Executive Committee says, “This is a must attend event for those in the Aviation community who want their information directly from the FAA, SESAR and ICAO managers who are actually making the decisions.”

Committee News Header Image

SC-228, MOPS for Unmanned Systems, met last month to review the comments from the Final Review and Comment period for the new Electro-Optical/Infra-red MOPS document being developed by Working Group 1 (DAA).  The committee passed a motion to advance the document to the PMC for review and publication in March of this year. They also discussed the status of Working Group 2 (C2) activities and the document they are developing for publication later in 2021. They also are requesting an update to their Terms of Reference to begin working jointly with EUROCAE WG-105 on an LTE standard for UAS C2.  There was also an update from two newly formed Working Groups (WG-3 Lost Link and WG-4 NAV) and their newly appointed leadership, that will begin working in earnest as 2021 progresses. Lastly, a SC-228 Ad Hoc group that is updating DO-304 with up-to-date material and concept of operations scenarios reported on their activities.

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If you want to find out more about getting your electronics hardware certified for use on aircraft, then you should attend this comprehensive RTCA training course. April 26-30. 


RTCA’s Upcoming Training

Don’t miss out on our upcoming training opportunities. Seats are filling up fast! See below for all upcoming training. Visit our training page for more detailed information.

DO-178C – March 15, 2021

Guidance for Engineers: DO-178C DAL D Systems – April 6

DO-333 – April 8

DO-160G – April 19, 2021

DO-254 – April 26, 2021

Airworthiness Security Certification – May 10

Register Now



RTCA Member Spotlight: RTCA Thanks Seth Frick and Jean-Luc Robin, Co-Chairs of SC-239 for giving their time and leadership to SC-239’s efforts on updating the MOPS for Low Range Radar Altimeters. Watch the webinar on the white paper: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OpYhjK2MDqM


RTCA Announces Request for Proposal for training course: The Role of Human Factors in Flight Deck Design and Certification Process

An Introductory Guide for Engineers, Managers, and Pilots. The purpose of this course is not intended to develop human factors specialists, but should be designed to provide a practical application of Human Factor Engineering for a broad scope of personnel involved in the management, engineering, and operations of aircraft.


RFP Release: February 16, 2021

Deadline for Questions: March 2, 2021

Proposals Due: March 16, 2021

RTCA decision on Human Factors Course: April 2021

First Training Class: 3Q2021


Submit proposal for consideration on or before March 16, 2021 to:

Brett Eastham

RTCA, Inc.

1150 18th St NW, Suite 910

Washington DC 20036

Or email to beastham@rtca.org

For more information about the Digest, please contact:
Name: Ka'Nika Evans
Email: kevans@rtca.org

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