Farnborough, UK/ 10 August 2020 – Satcom Direct (SD), the business aviation solutions provider, is delivering high-speed connectivity to the world’s first VVIP Airbus ACJ320neo. Acropolis Aviation, the UK-based VVIP charter operator selected SD for its ability to deliver a custom-made connectivity solution that can meet the demanding needs of crew and passengers on board the definitive executive airliner, while also supporting and enhancing ground operations.
A combination of SD hardware and software delivers ultra-high-speed data service throughout the aircraft using Inmarsat’s powerful Jet ConneX data service. Customized configuration designed specifically for the ACJ320neo integrates dual SDR® Gateway routers paired with SD WiFi Hubs, to ensure consistent network availability throughout the cabin. In the flight deck, SD FlightDeck Freedom® datalink service enables secure communications for flight crew and supports automated alerts to the flight deck, such as GeoNotifications, Route Alerts, and Security Alerts.
On the ground the Acropolis Aviation flight department uses SD Pro®, the intelligent data management platform, to centralize flight planning and synchronize operations with enhanced visibility into aircraft and network performance. The open architecture software platform enables integration with third-party providers, including weather, fuel, and trip planning systems, and is designed to support future connectivity developments and aircraft insights.
The SD integration team worked closely with Switzerland-based MRO/Completion Center AMAC Aerospace, the leading experts in bespoke cabin completions, to support the system installation. SD conducted a number of configuration design reviews and participated in testing, alongside AMAC technicians, to ensure optimization of the cabin network and phone systems. The fully redundant network ensures every passenger can simultaneously access data to support internet, phone, text and voice messaging, app usage, video conferencing and live TV streaming, without interruption.
Tailored Entry-into-Service (EIS) sessions were delivered to the Acropolis Aviation flight department, crew and operations team at the ACJ320neo’s home base, Farnborough Airport, also the location of SD International Headquarters. The SD EIS program offers professional on-site instruction about each specific aircraft connectivity system configuration and aims to facilitate the best customer experience. Sessions devoted to SD Pro® detailed full system capability, including the Advanced Connectivity Module, which provides detailed analysis of network activity. In addition to providing visibility on data usage, the platform also enables flight tracking, and forecasts any potential communications disruptions during flight. As this is the first VVIP configuration of the ACJ320neo, SD also created a bespoke connectivity manual providing easy reference to the training materials designed exclusively for the Acropolis Aviation team.
“As we bring into service the world’s first Airbus ACJ320neo we naturally wanted to integrate secure state-of-the-art connectivity services that reliably deliver powerful connectivity to our passengers. The aircraft can easily make 12-hour flights and we want all our passengers to have the option to be connected to high-speed broadband without any compromise in speed and functionality,” said Acropolis Aviation CEO Jonathan Bousfield. “Satcom Direct is providing a service that meets these needs and more. The 24/7 customer support, the company’s global presence and the ability to facilitate a connectivity system customized to our specific needs was critical and drove our decision to work with SD on this project.”
Michael Skou Christensen, SD Vice President International added, “Our clients expect us to deliver the highest standards and we want to meet and exceed those expectations in terms of connectivity in flight, as well as for operations on the ground. A customized connectivity solution implementing the full capabilities of SD Xperience with both hardware and software, supported by our award-winning customer service and ground infrastructure, allows us to satisfy those requirements.”
About Satcom Direct: Satcom Direct (SD) and its group of companies provides global connectivity solutions for business and general aviation, military, government, and head-of-state aircraft. The company also provides land mobile services to areas with connectivity limitations. Since 1997, SD has worked to advance the technology of global connectivity, being first to market with many new capabilities in communications. SD’s industry-leading connectivity solutions are complemented by its divisional capabilities, including SD Avionics cabin router systems and SD flight operations software. The company’s next generation of services help to synchronize the aircraft with the flight department, connecting the entire flight operation. SD’s technologies provide the most powerful integrated data platform in the industry.
A premier Inmarsat Distribution Partner, Iridium service partner, and Viasat preferred reseller, SD is also the Master Distributor of FlexExec. SD World Headquarters and primary operations center is located in Melbourne, Florida, with additional office locations in the United States, Canada, UK, UAE, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Australia, Russia, and Brazil. For more information regarding SD, visit www.satcomdirect.com, e-mail [email protected], or call U.S. +1.321.777.3000 or UK +44.1252.554.460.
About Acropolis Aviation: Acropolis Aviation is a leading luxury charter operator based at Farnborough Airport, with a complementary sales office in Fort Lauderdale, USA. Headed by CEO Jonathan Bousfield, the company employs 30 personnel. Its first Airbus ACJ319, G-NOAH, entered service in March 2010 and the company has gained a reputation for excellent service in the high-end charter market. Acropolis holds Wyvern Wingman safety accreditation. Acropolis introduced the world’s first ACJ320neo (G-KELT) in March this year, five years after announcing the launch order at the EBACE Show in 2015. Its exceptional and elegant cabin was outfitted by AMAC Aerospace, to the design of Alberto Pinto’s lead designer Yves Pickardt. The aircraft features an elegant 19-seat cabin with sleeping for 17, focused on well-being for 12-hour flights, without compromising on luggage capacity. Delivering the highest levels of comfort, the aircraft has an average cabin altitude of 6,400ft, coupled with air humidifier.