Gogo Business Aviation (Gogo) reports it has passed another critical milestone in its 5G programme, with the Avance LX5, the next iteration of its Avance inflight connectivity platform, receiving Supplemental Type Certification (STC) and Parts Manufacturer Approval (PMA) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the USA.
The first-article STC for the onboard 5G system was completed by Duncan Aviation’s engineering & certifications services team on a Citation Excel aircraft. Gogo says its dealer network and OEM partners are now pursuing multiple STCs that will certify the Gogo Avance LX5 system for installation across a variety of business aircraft models, as a line-replaceable unit (LRU). Once the 5G chip is available, a minor STC modification will be required before customer installations of the LX5 can begin.
Installation is relatively simple as the LX5 has the same form factor and connections as the current L5 hardware. Customers can pre-provision for Gogo 5G by installing the multi-band (MB13) 5G antennas and an Avance L5 LRU. The L5 system will operate on the Gogo Biz 4G network until Gogo 5G launches, which is expected in the third quarter of 2024. When Gogo 5G launches, customers will be eligible to receive a free LX5 to swap with their existing L5 LRU.
“Receiving formal approval from the FAA to produce and manufacture the Avance LX5 LRU reaffirms our commitment to Gogo 5G as we march toward our launch date,” said Sergio Aguirre, president of Gogo. “We built LX5 on the Avance platform as a smaller, single-box option to make the installation of Gogo 5G even easier for customers.”
The company expects Gogo 5G to provide ~25 Mbps on average, with peak speeds in the 75-80 Mbps range. According to Gogo, the system has been engineered to deliver high throughput with very low latency for multiple users, meaning it can meet the increased demand for data-heavy services and applications being used on board aircraft today, and those coming in the future.