Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast

About ADS-B

SESAR Deployment Manager, supported by Eurocontrol on ADS-B, is contributing to a more efficient, safe and sustainable air transport system across Europe

In recent years ADS-B emerged as a cost effective surveillance technology with great potential towards innovative applications.

ADS-B involves the aircraft using a certified position source to determine own position and broadcasting it in short intervals by means of a data link in radio frequency spectrum. This functionality is usually referred to as ADS-B Out.

Conversely, an aircraft can be fitted with an ADS-B receiver – processor to display the detected ADS-B transmissions from other aircraft to the pilot. This is then referred to as ADS-B In.

With ADS-B, realtime visiblity is provided to air traffic control and to other equipped ADS-B aircraft with position and velocity data transmitted periodically. ADS-B also provides the data infrastructure for inexpensive flight tracking, planning, and dispatch.

In high complexity environments such as the EU airspace, ADS-B is envisaged to operate in conjunction with existing independent cooperative chains, greatly enhancing accuracy, data availability and reducing frequency load.

Implementation status

ADS-B Implementation Status

Status, EU27+4 registered fleet, Version Number 2 (ED-102A/ DO260B)

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ED-102B/DO-260C clears another milestone

On September 15th, 2020, draft ED-102B/DO-260C was approved for submission to the EUROCAE Council...

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16 Sep, 2020


On 18 August 2020, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) released the Acceptable...

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20 Aug, 2020

New podcast episode: SPI IR amendment

SDM ADS-B team released a new episode of the regular ADS-B Podcast. In this...

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16 Jul, 2020

Transitional regime for ADS-B airborne stakeholders approved and implementation deadline postponed by 6 months due to COVID-19

30 April 2020 – Today the European Commission published in the Official Journal of...

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30 Apr, 2020

EASA Committee approves SPI IR Amendment

22 April 2020 – On behalf of the European Commission, SESAR Deployment Manager is...

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22 Apr, 2020

Latest podcast episode with ISAVIA out now

27 March 2020 – What kind of benefits can ISAVIA identify in ADS-B implementation?What...

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27 Mar, 2020

ED-102B /Do-260C out on public consultation

24 March 2020 – EUROCAE and RTCA have been working jointly in the development...

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24 Mar, 2020

Our third podcast episode is here!

“The military does understand the need to further develop and rationalise the CNS in...

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10 Mar, 2020

Space based ADS-B enabling operations in the NAT region

13 Feb 2020 – As of AIRAC 02/2020, effective from 30 January 2020, a...

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13 Feb, 2020

“Europe for Aviation” teaming up to tackle sustainability, capacity and innovation at the 2020 World ATM Congress

30 Jan 2020 – The “Europe for Aviation” team, made up of eight European...

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30 Jan, 2020

Increasing number of ANSPs roll out ADS-B

ADS-B already in use on multiples sites in Spain 29 Jan 2020 – In...

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29 Jan, 2020

ADS-B Podcast: CANSO supports European ADS-B implementation

Our newest podcast episode is out to take a closer look at European ADS-B...

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23 Jan, 2020

NPRM published by the FAA about Remote ID of Small UAS

On December 20, 2019, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released the Notice of Proposed...

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09 Jan, 2020

ADS-B Implementation Plan 2019 Delivered to the European Commission

On 20 December 2019, the ADS-B Implementation Plan edition 2019 was delivered to the...

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20 Dec, 2019

First episode of the ADS-B Podcast now available!

Interested in European ADS-B implementation? SESAR Deployment Manager now brings you closer to the...

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17 Dec, 2019

SPI IR Amendment proposal out on consultation, deadline 10 February 2020

On 13 December, the European Commission launched the public consultation of the long anticipated...

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16 Dec, 2019

FAA Successfully Completes Final ADS-B Milestone

WASHINGTON – The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) completed its final implementation milestone with Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B),...

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16 Oct, 2019

Air operators committed to sharing EU ADS-B implementation plans

According to the latest planning data aggregated by SESAR Deployment Manager (SDM), airspace users...

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12 Jul, 2019

EU ADS-B airborne equipage trend accelerating

Airborne equipage has doubled since October 2018 in the European Union. This trend is...

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12 Jul, 2019

ADS-B in Europe

ADS-B Implementation Plan

To pave the way for the transformation of the European surveillance infrastructure towards the less costly and more spectrum efficient ADS-B technology, Airspace Users operating in EU airspace with airplanes of more than 5.7 tons maximum certified takeoff mass (MTOM) or maximum cruising true airspeed capability greater than 250 knots (KTAS) have been mandated by European Commission per Commission Implementing Regulation EU No 1207/2011 (SPI IR), amended by EU No 1028/2014 and EU 2017/386 to implement SPI IR compliant avionics, including ADS-B version 2 (according to EASA CS-ACNS and EUROCAE ED-102A) before June 7th 2020. The mandate applies to all GAT/IFR flights within the EU airspace, including operators whose state of registry is outside of the EU but operate into or across the EU airspace.

The European Commission tasked SESAR Deployment Manager (SDM) with the planning and execution of a coordinated and synchronized aircraft and ground implementation of ADS-B. In response to this request SDM produced the ADS-B Implementation Plan, the first edition of which was delivered and published in December 2018. SDM partnered with EUROCONTROL which supports the activity, by, amongst others, performing the operational and technical coordination, feedback from its NM performance monitoring on ADS-B as well as contributing to the preparation of the activity deliverables.

CIR (EU) 2020/587 Amending SPI IR

The 2018 edition of the ADS-B Implementation Plan established that the target date of the SPI IR, 7th June 2020, was not likely to be achieved by a non-negligible portion of the affected EU-based Airspace Users. Continuous monitoring of the implementation effort currently predicts the achievable compliance rate of the mandated fleet as approaching 80%. In order to provide an appropriate measure of legal accommodation of the residual fleet, the European Commission published COMMISSION IMPLEMENTING REGULATION (EU) 2020/587.

The regulation amends the existing SPI IR 1207/2011 and 1206/2011. Concerning the airborne implementation, it provides, beside the general shift of the compliance date, conditional transitional arrangements and exemptions.

Beside the transitional arrangements and the exemption scheme depicted in the figure above, the CIR 2020/587 revised other parts of the implementing rule.

Some of the changes relevant to the airborne implementation are as follows:

  • Flight plans
    Operators of non-equipped State aircraft communicated as per Article 8(3) and operators of aircraft not equipped in accordance with Article 5(5) operating within the Single European Sky airspace, shall include the indicators SUR/EUADSBX or SUR/EUEHSX or SUR/EUELSX or a combination thereof, in Item 18 of the flight plan.
  • Scheduled Maintenance
    The paragraph on the check of the transponder system at least every two years was removed.
    Note: Manufacturer Maintenance Planning Documents and/or local requirements apply.
  • Defective Transponder System
    For aircraft where the capability of the transponders to comply with the requirements on ADS-B and EHS is temporarily inoperative, operators shall be entitled to operate that aircraft in the Single European Sky airspace for a maximum of 3 consecutive days.
  • Certification Requirements
    The installation requirements per Annex 10 to the Chicago Convention, Volume IV, Fourth Edition have to include all amendments up to No. 77, (previously No. 85)
    Note: This pertains to Mode-S legacy equipment predating ADS-B V2.
  • Mode S EHS exemption
    The EHS exemption for aircraft where required parameters are not available on a digital bus on-board has been clarified.

Some of the changes relevant to the ground implementation are as follows:

  • 24-Bit Address assignment standard
    The standard for the assignment of 24-Bit ICAO aircraft addresses per Chapter 9 of Annex 10 to the Chicago Convention has to include all amendments up to No 90 instead of No 85
  • Data sharing
    The definition of formal arrangements between air navigation service providers for the exchange or provision of surveillance data has been facilitated
  • Avionics monitoring
    The requirement for Air Navigation Service Provider to inform operators of identified aircraft whose avionics exhibit a functional anomaly, has been deleted
    Note: The scope of avionics monitoring remains covered by provisions in other regulations.

EASA released AMC/GM to the SPI IR regulation giving further information, definitions and recommendations on several articles and paragraphs as shown in the figure below, ordered by the addressed stakeholder groups. The document is available on the EASA website

Global ADS-B implementations and regulations

There are numerous ADS-B mandates anticipated or already in place in many parts of the world. The map below shows in green regions requiring at least ADS-B version 0, in dark blue the ones requiring ADS-B version 2, together with the anticipated date of entry-into-force, and in grey where regulatory activity is ongoing and mandates are expected in the near future. Note that the map will be regularly updated as new information becomes available.

Integration in the European ATM systems

The EU Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) have reported a substantial ADS-B sensor coverage in Europe available from ground based systems; primarily from combined WAM/ADS-B systems but also ADS-B only Ground systems. ADS-B capable radars as well as space-based ADS-B coverage are expected to make a substantial contribution towards a global ADS-B coverage in the coming years.

Having secured coverage, the ANSP will next proceed to integrate ADS-B data in its surveillance chain; this integration in the EU ATM systems is currently limited, with ANSPs citing aircraft ADS-B equipage, ADS-B performance and regulatory concerns as the necessary conditions to be resolved. However, a majority of EU based national ANSPs have at least some plans in place to proceed with integration in the near future, given the availability of a sufficient aircraft equipage ratio. SDM believes that those concerns will be addressed and resolved adequately as ADS-B implementation progresses.

If the integration is properly synchronized across domains and supported by a competent programme to catalyze ground investment plans, many ANSPs indicated their willingness to commit to technical and operational integration activities that could use the ADS-B sensor coverage across the vast majority of the continental airspace as early as 2023.

The primary use-case for ADS-B in the complex and traffic heavy European airspace is that of a complementary sensor to independent surveillance. In that role, ADS-B will open up substantial rationalization potential in the very dense European network of secondary radars. The use of ADS-B as sole means will occur in specific environments, characterized by low traffic density and/or lack of independent alternatives. This use case has already been successfully deployed operationally in a number of locations; the ICAO NAT region is a prime deployment location for sole-means ADS-B.

It is evident that a strong momentum to progress with ADS-B deployment exists in both the airborne and the ground domain. A harmonized ground and air deployment programme is important to synchronize and catalyze these efforts, to ensure that substantial ADS-B operational use is commonplace in Europe from mid 2020s.


Airborne Domain

Will there be exemptions from ADS-B carriage beyond 7th June 2020?

Currently, there are no exemptions for the carriage of ADS-B version 2 equipment in place. SPI-IR mandated airframes shall be compliant by June 7th, 2020.

SDM survey in 2018 found that due to operational and procurement challenges some airlines will ultimately fail to meet the compliance date. Therefore, SDM believes that some very limited discretion should be shown to airlines demonstrating a clear and robust indication of procurement and ADS-B implementation.

EC requested EASA to provide a duly justified revision of the exemptions section of SPI IR. The final decision, embedded in the revision of SPI IR, is expected for publication Q4 2019.

Are there any Ground ADS-B use cases in the near future?

Air Navigation Service Providers reported that there are implementations of ADS-B sensors ongoing to complement redundant surveillance layers, and some limited operational use is already occurring. A high airborne equipage rate will be needed to allow for an ADS-B driven progressive rationalization of the highly redundant Secondary Surveillance Radar network in the European continental airspace.

A number of large European ANSPs announced major surveillance infrastructure renewal programs commencing 2020, which will present an opportunity to progress with ADS-B deployment.

Why do I have to upgrade from ADS-B Version 0 and Version 1 to Version 2?

ADS-B Version 2 provides the performance required to safely provide ATC service in the dense and complex European continental airspace.

Version 2 ADS-B conveys improved data accuracy, latency and integrity, borne among others from the requirement to directly wire the Global Navigation Sensor System to the ADS-B Transponder unit.

What is the difference between the EU and the US mandate?

The two mandates are very similar, however there are a few differences. One difference relates to that the US mandate has additional requirements on the Position data quality as well as operational requirements linked to the position source used, where some are subject to a temporary exemption until 31 December 2024.

Refer to the FAA website for the detailed exemption policy

A well rounded description of the FAA mandate is available here.

Ground Domain

Is ADS-B intended as a replacement of the Secondary Surveillance Radar?

At system component level it is expected to happen in an increasing measure; this decision is for each ANSP to make, taking into account the specifics of own operational environment. As a technology, in continental Europe ADS-B is expected to complement, rather than replace, the independent cooperative layer, consisting of Mode S and multilateration systems and to a diminishing part, the legacy Mode A/C radars. The respective EUROCAE Standard for this application is the ED-161 and the deployment is already in progress in Europe.

Work is ongoing in further standardization of integrating ADS-B with independent cooperative sensors.

Surveillance based on Secondary radar and Multilateration gives us full coverage of the traffic in our Area of Responsibility. When can we expect comparable equipage from ADS-B?

Based on the surveys, SDM anticipates the mandated fleet to reach the vicinity of 75% in mid-2020, 93% in 2023 and approach 100% in 2025; within a margin that is yet to be determined by future provisions, including the accommodation of a relatively small number of aircraft planned for phase-out before 2025, as well as by the stakeholders’ commitment to implementation. Learning from the experience with the implementation of the US mandate and from recent work carried out by SDM, the two most effective components in promoting compliance are timely clarity on anticipated regulatory action and continued support of the stakeholders in the form of frequent provision of up-to-date information to increase awareness as well as technical and operational coordination. Assuming both are put into effect in Europe, SDM believes that such percentages are reachable objectives.

As to what concerns General Aviation and other types of operations which reside outside of the scope of SPI IR, this domain is currently under the responsibility of EASA; queries and concerns regarding these types of operations should be addressed directly to EASA.

Can we expect improvements in ADS-B performance?

Yes; the mandated ADS-B Version 2 eliminates a large proportion of known causes of abnormal behavior observed in the previous versions. As usual, it will the responsibility of each individual ANSP to independently verify ADS-B performance before committing to a provision of ADS-B enabled ATC service.

What about Space-based ADS-B?

Space-based ADS-B is a relatively recent technology which utilizes a network of communication satellites placed in the Low Earth orbit (LEO) to provide ADS-B coverage “from above”. The LEO constellation listens to ADS-B messages broadcast from aircraft and forwards them to subscribers using a low latency link.

The performance of the space-based ADS-B surveillance is sufficient to allow a drastic reduction in ICAO Doc 4444 PANS ATM longitudinal and lateral separation minima for aircraft equipped with ADS-B Out, which is currently on consultation in ICAO. To apply these new separation standards, a number of prescribed conditions must be met, including RNP and RCP. The new standards reduce the applicable minima to 19 NM / 17 NM longitudinal and can be further reduced to 15/14 NM in specific traffic conditions. NAV CANADA and NATS are currently in the process of applying these new separation standards in the NAT Region, with other ICAO NAT ANSPs expected to follow suit.

Space-based ADS-B will also enable continental coverage and ANSPs will be able to procure this as a surveillance service.

Aireon consortium ( is the world’s first provider of this service and was recently awarded the Air Navigation Service Provider certificate by EASA. Aireon utilizes the Iridium NEXT network of 66 LEO satellites providing global coverage.


ADS-B Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast
ADS-B Version 0 EUROCAE ED-102 / RTCA D260
ADS-B Version 1 RTCA DO-260A
ADS-B Version 2 EUROCAE ED-102A / RTCA DO-260B
ANSP Air Navigation Service Provider
ATM Air Traffic Management
CEF Connecting Europe Facility, an EU infrastructure funding instrument under administration by INEA
Cooperative vs non-cooperative surveillance Refers to whether the surveillance system includes any onboard components required to function.
EASA European Union Aviation Safety Agency
FAA Federal Aviation Administration
GAT General Air Traffic, ICAO definition
ICAO NAT North Atlantic region
Independent cooperative surveillance A surveillance method that requires both onboard and off-board (terrestrial or satellite based) components to function and where the surveillance position is determined by the surveillance system itself.
Independent vs dependent surveillance Refers to whether the surveillance position is determined by the surveillance system itself (independent) or reported by the aircraft (dependent).
INEA Innovation and Networks Executive Agency
IFR Instrument Flight Rules
OAT Operational Air Traffic, ICAO definition
SPI IR Surveillance Performance and Interoperability Implementing Regulation
STC Supplemental Type Certificate
WAM Wide Area Multilateration


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