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Sagetech’s aircraft tracking technology to be hosted on Iridium constellation

Sagetech has provided the ADS-B receiver technology to Harris Corporation, developing space-qualified ADS-B receivers for Aireon.


Kelvin Scribner, President, Sagetech

Sagetech Corporation has delivered signal-processing receiver technology to Harris Corporation. This technology will reportedly enable the global tracking of aircraft flying over oceans and other remote areas.

Sagetech, an avionics company, has provided the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) receiver technology to Harris Corporation, a communications company developing space-qualified ADS-B receivers for Aireon.

Aireon is establishing a satellite-based air traffic management system that will be hosted on the Iridium NEXT satellite constellation.

Sagetech’s software was reportedly developed to the A3 standard, the highest capability level cited in the DO-260B performance standard for ADS-B equipment. Additionally, its development followed, the company claims, software process standard DO-178B (Level C) to achieve superior design assurance.

“We are delighted to have achieved not only challenging functional requirements, but also a highly efficient and robust design for the rigors of low earth orbit,” said Sagetech President Kelvin Scribner. “Sagetech’s expertise in ADS-B technology is a perfect fit with Aireon’s requirements, and being among the first to achieve A3 performance underscores our commitment to aviation safety. We at Sagetech are honored to contribute to making the skies safer for people all over the world.”

Aireon will provide global space-based ADS-B coverage through Iridium NEXT, a low-Earth orbiting (LEO) system of inter-linked satellites that will begin launching in 2015. Currently, air traffic control is a land-based system that relies on radar ground stations to send and receive signals. Aireon’s space-based capabilities will reportedly ensure complete global coverage of aircraft tracking – even over oceans and in remote regions, improving safety and efficiency.

Sagetech’s ADS-B technology is making its way to the General Aviation market as well, Scribner notes. Also in March, the company released Clarity, a lightweight, affordably priced ADS-B receiver that is reportedly easy to use with Electronic Flight Bag software operating on an iPad or other tablet computer.