in Aerospace

Cost of comms upgrade could ground some private jets

Posted 7 December 2018 · Add Comment

New research from London based Colibri Aircraft, which specialises in the marketing, resale and purchase of pre-owned private aircraft, reveals it may be uneconomical to upgrade around 11.3% of Europe’s fleet of private jets (219) with a new monitoring system that becomes mandatory to have by 7th June 2020.

This would effectively prohibit them from flying and leave them grounded. 

It predicts that many of these aircraft will be broken up and sold off as parts as the cost of compliance becomes economically unjustifiable when compared to the value of the aircraft.

ADS-B Out is a new monitoring system that broadcasts where an aircraft is at all times. It is already a requirement for aircraft in Asia to have this, and in the US and Europe it becomes mandatory in January and June 2020 respectively.

ADS-B Out parts and installation costs can vary widely, from $25,000 to $200,000, depending on the aircraft’s platform.  Colibri Aircraft’s research reveals that just over 11% of Europe’s fleet of private jets are valued at $750,000 or less and were built in 1996 or before, possibly making it uneconomical for them to be upgraded with the new communications system.  This is particularly true of older aircraft where modifications to comply with this new mandate either do not exist or are extremely expensive.

Oliver Stone, Managing Director, Colibri Aircraft said: “The value of certain business aircraft in Europe may mean it’s not worth spending tens of thousands, and sometimes hundreds of thousands, of pounds installing ADS-B Out in them.  It will become even harder for these owners to sell their aircraft in one piece, so I predict a large number will be broken-up and sold as parts to maintenance companies.” 

Analysis by Colibri Aircraft reveals that Europe has 1,944 private jets.


Estimated percentage of private
jet fleet where it may
not be economical to upgrade
with ADS-B Out 

Estimated number of private jets where it may not be economical to upgrade with ADS-B Out

United Kingdom















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