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ADS-B: Why you need to make the change now


The FAA is now requiring all aircraft support Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) under the Next Generation Air Traffic Control System. NextGen is the modernization of the US air transportation system technology, featuring a transitioning of the ground-based radar systems for traffic control and aircraft separation to satellite-controlled systems. 

This upgrade will make flying safer, more efficient, and more accessible than ever before. Real-time ADS-B provides pilots with vital traffic, weather, and flight-information services, as well as broadcasts your aircraft’s GPS position to ground control and other aircraft with ADS-B receivers. 

With this modernization comes certain requirements of aircraft owners. Without the proper upgrades, you will not be able to fly in controlled areas, so it’s time to upgrade now

Upgrade Requirements

When Do I Need to Upgrade?

All aircraft must be properly equipped by January 1, 2020.

Do All Aircraft Need Upgrades?

Certain aircraft are exempt from this equipment requirement. The FAA has a Decision Flowchart to help you figure out if your aircraft needs any changes. For example, aircraft without electrical systems, such as balloons or gliders, are exempt. 

For more information on FAA airspace class requirements, see the table here.

Upgraded Technologies


A Universal Access Transceiver, or UAT, operates on 978 MHz (978UAT). UAT equipment costs generally are lower, and this frequency receives free weather information (not all UATs support the optional ADS-B In).”


“The 1090ES datalink uses a Mode S Extended Squitter transponder (1090 MHz; “ES” refers to ADS-B information appended to the Mode S data). 1090ES is required above 18,000 feet, outside of the United States, and for Part 135 operations. However, 1090ES does not receive weather data.”

Source – Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association

Upgrade Financing

To make sure your aircraft stays in top flying condition, start planning your upgrade today. It’s free to get pre-approved with US Aircraft Finance. We offer fixed-rate aircraft loans with terms up to 25 years so we can tailor to your unique financial needs.  

For more information on refinancing and upgrade loans, check out our site here

You can also check out our blog, Financing Your Aircraft Purchase, for more helpful tools to estimate your payments and begin the application process today. 

You can also contact us directly here for more information on how USAF can help put your aircraft plans into action. 

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