NetJets Scoops Up the NextGen Ball; Partners With FAA

With the demise of NextGen test platform DayJet, fractional operator NetJets has taken on the role. The pioneer of fractional ownership signed an agreement with the FAA this month to run test programs on what is being called the air traffic control system of the future. NetJets will equip part of its fleet of more than 550 aircraft (some operated under management contracts by sister company Executive Jet). The tests will involve Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS); Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B); area navigation (RNAV); and Required Navigation Performance (RNP). The use of electronic flight bags (EFBs) in place of paper charts could also be part of the program. NetJets might also form a joint venture with Jeppesen for developing dedicated RNP procedures for its own use. According to James Christiansen, president of NetJets Aviation, "We have the ability to equip the proper aircraft the right way and channel them into the test area to gather the data the FAA needs."

Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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