Boeing is on a path to begin offering forward-fit automatic dependent surveillance broadcast (ADS-B) “in” capability to its fleet, starting with the 787 next year.

Initial applications with the technology, which receives ADS-B “out” position, rate and identification information from nearby aircraft for situational awareness and efficiency purposes, will include visual separation on approach (VSA) and in-trail procedures (ITP) to boost efficiency in the terminal and cruise portions of a flight, respectively. Rockwell Collins will supply the applications, which run on the avionics makers’ installed systems on the 787.

Boeing has been taking a slow approach to implementing ADS-B “in,” which the FAA to date has not yet mandated but has been charged to do so by Congress, on factory-built aircraft and in the existing fleet.

By contrast, there are several ADS-B in systems and applications that are certified or will soon be certified for Airbus aircraft. Avionics maker ACSS has applied for a supplemental type certificate (STC) for its SafeRoute suite of ADS-B in applications for the A320 family using the company’s TCAS (Traffic Alert and Collision Avoidance System) 3000SP surveillance system. Included will be the interval management, visual separation in the terminal area, and surface applications displayed on an Astronautics Nexis electronic flight bag installed under a separate, already existing STC.

ACSS already has a certified ADS-B in offering for the A330 family, with customers that include US Airways with installations on 11 A330s. The airline has tested the application for in-trail procedures in the North Atlantic and will next move to visual separation trials in the Charlotte, N.C., and Philadelphia areas, followed by merging and spacing testing, where crews acquire traffic on their displays and maintain following distance from cruise to landing.

Honeywell has certified ADS-B in systems available for the A320, A330 and A340. Next to join the Airbus offerings is Rockwell Collins, which is certifying its ADS-B in-capable TCAS system on the A320, to be followed by introduction of ITP and cockpit display of traffic information applications through software loads.

There have been examples of ADS-B in systems certified on Boeing aircraft, including a Honeywell ITP installation on 12 United Airlines Boeing 747-400s taking part in trials in the Pacific, but the 787 certification will be the first large-scale, forward-fit offering. While Rockwell Collins will be the only provider of ADS-B in systems on the 787 and 747-8, the airframer will have ACSS, Honeywell and Rockwell Collins options for the 737, 767 and 777 fleets.