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Missing Aircraft
Operations base
- via the website
“With spiderwatch, the alert is raised
within minutes of the system losing con- .50c USD
tact with the spider and the aircraft can be
located immediately based on its last re-
ported position point, saving valuable time
tacts if it in the event of a real emergency.”
lost contact He says Spider Tracks Limited has filed
Pilot with PDA
and Spider BT
with the spi- a patent for automatic active monitoring
der. Spider- for aircraft. Active tracking is reliant on
How it works
watch takes that having a comprehensive global satellite
concept one step network, Iridium, to ensure aircraft can be
Pilot with PDA
and Spider BT
family, manager
further by auto- seen wherever they are in the world.
via cellphone
matically monitor- Bartley says the two tier alerting sys-
ing every flight, tem gives those who know the pilot best He says other systems rely on a special
24/7. the chance to contact them first. This is a keypad in the cockpit. “One of the benefits
Bartley says some safeguard for pilots who de-power the air- of the spidertxt system is that it works with
countries are recognising craft without cancelling their spiderwatch. normal cellphones – as long as they are
how aircraft tracking so-
lutions provide a safer and
Spidertracks Launches
compatible with the system. And you can
text through the system to other cellphones.
more effective alternative to
Global Texting
Our philosophy is to keep everything as
ELTs. Spidertracks has also just launched simple as we can for our clients and this is
“The Canadian minister of two-way texting between aircraft and all about making their lives easier.”
transport recently decided not to those on the ground via the Iridium satel- A Windows compatible PDA equipped
mandate 406s in aircraft regis- lite network. with easily downloadable spidertxt soft-
tered in and entering Canada be- With spidertracks’ new generation ware, will link to the Bluetooth spider so
cause the legislation did not allow Bluetooth spiders, clients can text anyone, pilots can send and receive texts from the
for the inclusion of the latest, and from anywhere in the world, via the Irid- ground – either between the operations
more effective aircraft tracking tech- ium satellite network. base or to and from other cellphones via
nologies as an alternative to ELTs.” Spidertracks sales director Bruce Bart- the spidertracks website. The first release
Bartley says spidertracks with spider- ley says fleet operators and commercial is for Windows compatible PDAs only,
watch is also an alternative to traditional pilots will particularly benefit from the with software to enable a range of cell-
flight planning. new service. “The great thing about satel- phones, including the iPhone, to talk to
“Under the existing system, pilots file a lite texting is that it will work from any- the system will be released soon.
manual flight plan prior to take off nom- where. You’ll be able to text people from
inating their route and a time that they the other side of the world from places
About Spidertracks
will land at their destination. If the pilot that don’t have cellphone cover. That’s Spidertracks was launched in 2007 to
exceeds their SARtime, emergency particularly important for those who need fill the gap in the international aircraft
services are notified. The downfall of to communicate with their pilots when tracking market for portable, simple and
this system is that a significant time they’re in hard to reach places – like the cost effective satellite-based tracking so-
could have elapsed between an aircraft bottom of the Grand Canyon for example. lution. The introduction of spiderwatch is
accident and when SARtime elapses “It will also work better than satellite the latest innovation from the company
and a search is initiated. In addition, voice communication in those places be- that was the first to offer a portable solu-
rescue services have limited knowl- cause they system uses Short Burst Data tion without the need for external aerial.
edge of where the aircraft is, based on so doesn’t require the signal to be as Spidertracks provides tracking solutions
only where the pilot stated they in- strong as voice communication does. And for aviation, land-based and marine busi-
tended to go.” it’s cheaper.” nesses in 30 countries. • July 2009 19
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