Satellite communications (satcom) provider Viasat and avionics manufacturer Teledyne Controls have partnered to support inflight streaming of flight deck data for airline operational and maintenance uses.

Announced on June 25 at the Electronic Flight Bag Users Forum in Chicago, the partnership pairs Viasat’s inflight connectivity (IFC) system with Teledyne’s Aircraft Interface Device (AID) to offload quick access recorder data and stream Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) messages in real time.

“Commercial aircraft generate large volumes of data, and our goal is to help airlines use this data more effectively by removing the expensive manual, post-flight data acquisition process, as well as create an environment where communications and analysis happens between the flight deck and ground operations teams—all in real time,” Viasat VP and general manager-commercial aviation Don Buchman said.

The AID from Teledyne Controls, based in El Segundo, California, provides a wired and wireless interface between aircraft systems and tablet-based or traditional electronic flight bags (EFB) that pilots use on the flight deck. Data can be transferred in flight using broadband satcom and ground cellular services.

Viasat, based in Carlsbad, California, said data streaming using Teledyne’s AID will be supported by all of its current and future high-capacity Ka-band satellites, including SkyMuster 1 and II satellites operated by its partner, NBN, of Australia.

Australia’s Qantas Airways is accessing Viasat connectivity with Teledyne’s GroundLink system to transfer data across its domestic fleet of Airbus A330 and Boeing 737 airliners, and is seeking new ways to use the system with EFBs for tracking and visualizing weather, turbulence modeling and situational awareness, the companies said.

“The combination of Viasat’s inflight connectivity service with Teledyne’s Aircraft Interface Device is delivering tremendous cost savings along with data benefits to commercial airlines,” Teledyne Controls senior director of aircraft solutions Murray Skelton said.

“In working with Viasat, we can securely offload over 80% of ACARS data in real-time, which allows airlines to improve quality assurance programs and reduce costs associated with sending messages over expensive very high frequency radio systems, especially when over water.”

Bill Carey, bill.carey@aviationweek.com