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Further the funding
scheme launched in October 2020 The Department for Transport (DfT) has made
available additional funding to encourage the adoption of Electronic
Conspicuity (EC) within the UK’s General Aviation (GA) and Unmanned Aircraft
Systems (UAS) communities. The CAA is distributing these funds via a rebate
We recognise that
there are a range of EC solutions on the market that manufacturers and
communities have developed for their own needs.
The main equipment
able to be used on an aircraft for EC purposes currently available (and that a
refund can be claimed against) includes:
We will consider
requests from device manufacturers for alternative or newly developed equipment
to be added on a case by case basis. At a minimum, devices need to be emitting
and/or transmitting position and speed information on a dedicated frequency.
‘See and avoid’ is
the foundation for Visual Flight Rules flying in the UK. EC devices can
improve situational awareness for pilots but do not replace the fundamental
role of ‘see and avoid’. Pilots using EC devices should be aware of their
functionality and what they can, and cannot, do. Devices are not always
interoperable with each other. This means that users of one type of
device may or may not be electronically visible to each other, may have
different standards of reliability and accuracy, and may use different parts of
the radio spectrum for transmitting signals.
The DfT and CAA are
not recommending any specific device to pilots but do recommend that all pilots
understand and consider the functional benefits, and limitations, of any EC
device so they make informed decisions on the level of reliance that can be
placed on the information provided to them.
While not a
definitive list the table below describes the currently most used EC
technologies, a high-level understanding of the interoperability between them
and which are certified.
In parallel to the
grant scheme, work will continue a long-term strategy for EC in the UK.
Surveillance technology will continue to develop quickly and, together with the
DfT, we are open to exploring and embracing new technologies. Applicants
should be aware that in common with other technologies in any sector, any
device purchased today is not necessarily guaranteed to meet any future EC
Please login or
register for an account on the CAA online
customer portal. This is a one-off process so if you have already
registered you can log in using your existing account.
If you are
registering for a new account, then you will need to wait for an email from us
confirming your account is live. Please see our guidance on the customer portal for more
Once logged in to
your account on the portal you can complete the EC rebate online application
form where you will be asked to supply details and evidence of your purchase. Note:
if you are applying as part of an organisation for bulk claims, you will have
to fill in one application form per EC device purchased.
completion of your application form you will have the option to either download
a copy of your application form to your device or receive an email copy for
Please note: the current turnaround time for receiving your Electronic Conspicuity
Rebate (including Portal registration) is up to 30 working days. To help us
process the large number of applications we kindly ask that once you have
successfully completed the application form you do not contact the team to
chase your application until the 30 days is up.
For all enquiries
please contact us on ECRebate@caa.co.uk
The scheme does not
affect your rights under the Consumer Rights Act to return faulty equipment for
replacement or repair. In the event you are refunded for a purchase
you must cancel any application for a rebate or, if funding has been provided
return the rebate to the CAA. We may contact the seller of the equipment
to confirm whether goods have been returned.
Conspicuity (EC) is an umbrella term for the technology that can help pilots,
unmanned aircraft users and air traffic services be more aware of what is
operating in surrounding airspace. EC includes the devices fitted to aircraft
and unmanned systems that send out the information, and the supporting
infrastructure to help them work together. Airborne transponders, air
traffic data displays, ground-based antennas and satellite surveillance
services are all examples of EC. The information generated by these can
be presented to pilots and air traffic services visually, audibly or both to
provide them with information on other traffic nearby. This strengthens
the principle of ‘see and avoid’ by adding the ability to ‘detect and be
detected’. To be most effective it needs 100% of users operating in a
designated block of airspace using compatible EC devices, and be able to be
detected by others.
EC can play a vital
role in three key areas to support the UK’s Airspace Modernisation Strategy
Enabling the on-going modernisation of the UK’s airspace structure and route
Helping to mitigate the risk of mid-air collisions in Class G, and
infringements into controlled airspace.
Enabling the safe and efficient integration of unmanned aircraft
Airspace Modernisation Strategy
Information on EC
AIC2019Y141 : the steps that
can be made to enable ‘ADS-B out’ throughout the General Aviation fleet to
reflect recent changes and developments from EASA
An EC device that operates using ADS-B at 1090MHz must have a Declaration of Capability and Conformance from the manufacturer before you can legally use it on board an aircraft. The pilot in command of the aircraft is responsible for ensuring that the EC device has a valid declaration.
If you have any questions or would like to report an issue with an EC device please submit your question/comment here.
EC devices are intended for voluntary carriage on registered and non-registered UK Annex II aircraft, non-complex EASA aircraft of <5700kg MTOM and for gliders and balloons (including those covered under ELA 1 and ELA 2) within uncontrolled UK airspace.
EC devices can now be operated alongside specific transponders as per the AIC Y 141/2019
EC devices use a 24-bit address in the same way as a transponder. This usually forms part of an aircraft's Certificate of Registration. However, as an EC device is designed to be portable and to also be used by unregistered aircraft, the 24-bit address will be programmable by the user. You can find details on how to perform this function in your EC device's operating handbook.
If you are using an EC device on an unregistered aircraft, you need to contact the CAA Infrastructure Section and provide the following:
We will then allocate the EC device a unique ICAO 24 bit address to enable it to be used on multiple unregistered aircraft without re-programming.
If you are using your EC device on a registered aircraft with an existing ICAO 24 bit address, then this address shall be used.
If you need to move the device between registered aircraft, it should be reprogrammed with the new aircraft's ICAO 24 bit address (as appropriate).
If you sell your EC device, you need to clear any registered aircraft 24 bit address before the sale. The new purchaser must contact us with their contact details and we will issue a unique 24 bit address if necessary.
To operate any radio equipment, aircraft owners/operators must hold a valid Wireless Telegraphy Act (WTA) Aeronautical Radio Licence. 1090MHz EC devices are radio-transmitting equipment, so are subject to this regulation.
The WTA usually requires anyone operating a transmitter/receiver, on this frequency, to have or be under the direct supervision of someone who possesses a Flight Radio Telephony Operator's Licence or FRTOL. This was because when this radio licence condition was introduced, it was assumed that all aircraft radio stations would include a voice telephony function.
A General Exemption has been issued so that while a WTA licence is still needed, the pilot need not hold a FRTOL if the transponder is the only radio equipment on the aircraft. However, the WTA licence must be varied formally to remove the need for the FRTOL. Variations are available free of charge. They are available from the on request by completing the form here. You must keep the variation with the WTA licence.
Approved transmitting EC devices will be included under the licensee's WTA licence as standard once notified.
When you buy an EC device, it is the responsibility of the aircraft owner/operator to complete the relevant application form to obtain a WTA Aircraft Radio Licence from the CAA.
If you are a manufacturer wishing to submit a Declaration of
Capability and Conformance please go to the Aircraft
Equipment page and read CAP 1391.
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