For Immediate Release

July 12, 2001
Contact: Joette Storm
Phone: (907) 271-5296

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Alaskan Region has published a Request For Proposals (RFP) for the avionics systems to be used in the Capstone Phase II program in Southeast Alaska. Offers will accepted through September 5, 2001.

Capstone is a joint industry and agency effort to improve aviation safety and efficiency by putting cost effective, new technology avionics equipment into aircraft used by commercial operators and providing the supporting ground infrastructure. To date over 100 commercial aircraft have been equipped in the Yukon-Kuskokwim River Delta area as part of the Capstone Phase I program.

During Phase II, Capstone will incorporate technologies matured in the Phase I; build on lessons learned, and explores expansion of the use of other risk-mitigating technologies to reduce accidents and fatalities in the Southeast area of Alaska.

In order to ensure each new component slated for development dovetails with industry safety needs, representatives from Capstone met with local industry representatives to establish goals and objectives for future work in Southeast Alaska. This provides new challenges because of the vastly different operating conditions for this meteorologically diverse, mountainous, and maritime environment. The industry in SE Alaska has described their view of success in advancing safety as a "more useable IFR infrastructure," with focus on navigational capability for lower enroute altitudes, improved communications, weather information, surveillance, Controlled Flight into Terrain (CFIT) protection, and traffic awareness. Operators envision avionics that incorporate technologies such as Automatic Dependence Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B), augmented Global Positioning System (GPS) – Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS), Terrain Awareness and Warning Systems (TAWS), forward looking perspective view concept Flight Display (FD), and a Navigation Display (ND).

The Capstone Program accelerates efforts to improve aviation safety and efficiency through a multi-year introduction of current and emerging concepts and technologies. The absence of services, such as radar, makes Alaska the ideal location to evaluate key new communications, navigation, and surveillance (CNS) technologies. These technologies can better allow pilots to deal with navigation, terrain, traffic, and weather hazards.

Based on the responses from the RFP the FAA may purchase up to 200 avionics suites for installation in a variety of fixed wing and rotorcraft used by commercial operators in Southeast Alaska.

The RFP package is available by contacting the Contracting Officer at 907-271-5859, between the hours of 7:00am and 3:00pm, Alaska Standard Time. Closing date for receipt of offers is 2:30 p.m., September 5th, 2001.