AP Avionx, recently acquired by Kontron, has been awarded purchase orders by Row 44 for production quantities of the Server Management Unit (SMU) and the Modem Data Unit (MDU). These products are key components of the Row 44 in-flight broadband system that provides wireless connectivity and other services to airline passengers. The production orders will support widespread deployment of Row 44 services in 2011.
The Server Management Unit and Modem Data Unit are critical elements of Row 44’s satellite-based broadband system that provides in-flight Internet connectivity, entertainment, and airline operational data services for commercial airlines’ passengers and crew. Row 44’s satellite-based system is designed to function over land, water and across international borders, enabling seamless service delivery to both domestic and international carriers. The Row 44 system leverages an existing high-capacity Ku-Band satellite system. Customers connect to the system through wireless hotspots inside the aircraft cabin, enabled by the SMU and MDUs.
AP Avionx was initially selected by Row 44 in late 2006 to design and manufacture the subsystems based on AP Labs’ extensive experience in rugged airborne systems for military and commercial aerospace applications. Successful completion of test phases and FAA airworthiness certification in early 2008 led to customer in-flight testing and deployment in 2009/2010.