Qatar Airways to adopt Irish-backed Aireon’s tracking system

Irish Aviation Authority has 6% stake in firm which will provide precise aircraft tracking

Aireon’s deal with Qatar will provide the airline with flight-tracking information on its craft, including origin, destination, route and position. Photograph: AP

Aireon’s deal with Qatar will provide the airline with flight-tracking information on its craft, including origin, destination, route and position. Photograph: AP

 

Qatar Airways will be the first airline to adopt a new tracking system developed by Irish-backed Aireon.

The Middle Eastern carrier has confirmed that it intends to adopt Aireon’s Globalbeacon system, which provides minute-by-minute tracking of craft as they fly over oceans or remote areas.

Aireon will use a fleet of satellites to pinpoint aircrafts’ exact positions as they fly through airspace where current technology only allows voice contact with the nearest air navigation authority.

The Irish Aviation Authority is a 6 per cent shareholder in the company and will operate the new tracking system. Satellite systems specialist, Iridium, has the biggest stake in Aireon. Its other backers are the Canadian, Danish and Italian air traffic control authorities.

Its deal with Qatar will provide the airline with flight-tracking information on its craft, including origin, destination, route and position. It will exceed safety standards that airlines are expected to meet by 2018.

The International Civil Aviation Organisation has set the standards, which are known as Global Aeronautical Distress Safety System.

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