Blue Sky Network (La Jolla, CA. USA) has begun the process to obtain Federal Aviation Administration certification of an aircraft cabin-mounted voice and data service that uses the Iridium satellite network. The new unit, BlueSkyLink C-1000, integrates components of the Motorola Iridium telephone with proprietary circuitry for aircraft operations.
Blue Sky Network provides a complete suite of satellite-based communications technology to and from general aviation and business aircraft anywhere in the world.
The C-1000 consists of a Satellite Radio Unit mounted in an avionics bay or other location, a remote “in aircraft” unit mounted in the cabin or cockpit area and an L-band antenna mounted on the upper surface of the airframe. The new C-1000 incorporates several important elements, including a SIM card reader to allow separate charging accounts for different users, a data connection and the opportunity to use a standard cellular-type hands-free headset while in the air.
Applications for the C-1000 will enable two-way worldwide passenger and crew communications, free short messaging service from the ground to the aircraft and data connection for email and access to the Internet.
The satellite telephone for cabin installation will be available to BlueSkyLink customers in the first quarter of 2002, pending FAA approval. The cabin kit retails for US$6495 and the BlueSkyLink portable system is less than US$2000. Voice/data service plans range from US$40 to US$300 per month, depending on use. The maximum per minute charge is US$1.50, exclusive of the monthly network connection. Please visit Blue Sky Network’s web site for more information: www.blueskynetwork.com .