- Swiss Air-Rescue (Rega) has adopted "FLARM"
(Flight Alarm), a small-size aircraft anti-collision device
containing GPS technology developed by u-blox AG.
Rega is the largest air rescue organization in Switzerland and a
corporate member of the Swiss Red Cross. It deploys over ten
helicopters from many bases within Switzerland to transport medical
assistance to the scene of an accident. The helicopter bases are
distributed in such a way that in good flying conditions the
helicopters can reach any point in the country within 15 minutes.
Rega also operates three air-ambulances out of Zurich International
Airport, which are used to repatriate those who have been taken
seriously ill or injured abroad.
"With this system, significant gains in safety can be achieved at
a relatively low cost, something rare in the aviation industry",
announced Rega pilot and FLARM implementation project manager, Peter
FLARM is an aircraft anti-collision system that was initially
developed to reduce glider aircraft mid-air collisions, approximately
half of which result in lethal accidents. The system couples a u-blox
GPS receiver and a radio transceiver that can broadcast the position
of any aircraft to other pilots who employ the system. It then uses
acoustic and optical alerts to warn pilots of any possible conflicts,
or of fixed obstacles like cables or antennae. This can significantly
reduce the risk of mid-air accidents.
"u-blox's powerful GPS modules are small, lightweight and have
very low power consumption, making them ideal for use in light
aircraft. We are delighted to have found such a high-performing,
reliable and competitively-priced GPS module for our product", said
Urs Rothacher of FLARM.
FLARM was introduced in early 2004 and within a year and a half,
90% of the Swiss and Austrian glider aircraft have been equipped with
FLARM. In spring 2005 there were already more than 2'500 FLARM
devices in use in Germany, France, Switzerland, Austria, New
Zealand and South Africa.
The device has provided the light aviation industry with a
compact, efficient cost and low-power early warning system that aids
pilots in avoiding possible mid-air collisions. This is made possible
by u-blox's ANTARIS( GPS technology, which is simple to implement and
offers space efficiency, low power consumption and immunity to
interference from radio signals. Apart from high acquisition and
tracking sensitivity, ANTARIS provides excellent navigation accuracy
and outstanding dynamic performance in challenging locations anywhere
in the world. "u-blox is very honored that such a reputable rescue
organization as Rega relies on u-blox GPS technology", said Karsten
Tietz, Vice President of Sales Europe.
u-blox is an international company headquartered in Switzerland,
with sales organizations in the Americas, Europe and Asia. Founded
in 1997, u-blox develops leading positioning products based on the
Global Positioning System (GPS) for the automotive and mobile
communications markets. For more information, please visit
Swiss Air Rescue Organization Rega: www.rega.ch
A photo is available for downloading at
ots Originaltext: u-blox AG
Georg zur Bonsen, Product Management
Alicia Montoya, Marketing Communications