FAA says acceleration of NextGen to benefit passengers sooner than expected
Federal Aviation Administrator Randy Babbitt stated efforts to accelerate Next Generation Air Traffic Control system by two years will see the bulk of the delay-cutting, fuel-saving and other benefits in 2016 instead of 2018 (Dallas Morning News, 18-May-2010). He acknowledged that as the industry consolidates, it may become easier for remaining carriers to invest in making its fleet NextGen-capable.
FAA: “Only about 30% of aircraft have the gear that lets planes fly more precise and efficient approaches, take-offs and routes around airports … we need to get to a tipping point with the industry where enough planes have the gear that it becomes a necessity to compete. That tipping point could happen at 50% of planes … Getting all the gear on planes could cost USD7 billion, and the FAA is weighing possible loan plans or incentives to get airlines on board,” Randy Babbitt, Federal Aviation Administrator. Source: Dallas Morning News, 18-May-2010.