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Aireon and Airways New Zealand Sign Agreement to Investigate Improvements to Aviation Operations in the South Pacific

MCLEAN, VA, June 15, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Aireon LLC, developer of the world's first space-based global air traffic surveillance system, announces today that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Airways New Zealand, New Zealand's Air Navigation Service Provider (ANSP), to collaborate on the investigation of the potential to deploy space-based Automatic Dependent Surveillance – Broadcast (ADS-B) services in New Zealand Domestic and South Pacific airspace. Airways New Zealand's goal is to provide safe, efficient and low-cost air navigation services to their airline customers, on a long-term, sustainable basis.

Under the terms of this agreement, Airways New Zealand and Aireon will work together to investigate and potentially develop applicable regulations, standards and procedures for space-based ADS-B surveillance in the New Zealand Domestic Flight Information Region (FIR) and the oceanic Auckland FIR. The investigation will also involve a concept of operations for 100 percent surveillance coverage over remote, terrestrial and oceanic regions in both FIRs and international harmonization with neighboring ANSPs.

"This MOU is yet another important milestone in the growing worldwide cooperation to transform the future of aviation surveillance," said Cyriel Kronenburg, Vice President Sales & Marketing, Aireon. "Airways New Zealand controls more than 30 million square kilometers of airspace and has over one million aircraft movements annually,connecting to the FAA's pacific airspace. With such a large amount to cover, they are looking for cost-effective advancements in technology to improve business operations and safety, while bringing their customers the best service possible. Space-based ADS-B will not only improve operations, but will allow for 100 percent visibility into all aspects of their airspace."

Airways New Zealand Chief Operating Officer Pauline Lamb says Airways New Zealand is continuously looking for ways to improve service and efficiency for its airline customers.

"It is clear that satellite technology provides good opportunities and efficiencies for aviation, and Airways is pleased to be at the forefront in investigating the future of satellite surveillance," she says.

In addition to signing an MOU with Airways New Zealand, Aireon is building its customer base while also making major technical milestones and accomplishments. Aireon recently announced that its investor and partner, Iridium Communications Inc., has completed the first successful integration of the AireonSM payload on an Iridium NEXT satellite. This is a key technical milestone toward the first launch of Iridium NEXT and the first demonstration of the Aireon air traffic surveillance capability. Iridium NEXT is scheduled to launch between 2015 and 2017, with full Aireon service expected to be available in 2018.

About Aireon LLC

Headquartered in McLean, VA, Aireon LLC was formed to provide air navigation service providers with the capability to track aircraft anywhere in the world in real time, including the only coverage over oceanic, polar and remote regions. Aireon will harness the best of aviation surveillance advancements already underway and extend them globally in order to significantly improve the business of air operations through increased efficiency, expanded safety, worldwide integration, reduced GHG emissions and significant cost savings to airlines and ANSPs alike. For more information about Aireon, visit: www.aireon.com.

CONTACT: PRESS CONTACT: Jessie Hillenbrand Aireon +1 (703)287-7452 Jessie.Hillenbrand@Aireon.com

Source:Aireon LLC