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Boeing gets FAA approval for Connexion

Boeing has announced that it has received certification from the US Federal Aviation Administration for its broadband satellite service, Connexion by Boeing.

"We are extremely proud of the way the service has performed and how groups across Boeing have pulled together to make this certification process a company-wide success," said Timothy Lemaster, certification program manager for Connexion by Boeing.

Connexion by Boeing provides high-speed access to Internet, intranet, television, entertainment and e-mail. The company said plans to run a service trial with German airline Lufthansa will begin late this year.

The certification process took three months and was conducted aboard Connexion One, a 737-400 model used for research. Boeing had to prove that Connexion transmissions do not interfere with flight operations in the air or on the ground.

The company said testing will continue over US territories and waters under experimental licences granted by the Federal Communications Commission in December.

In an industry first, the final test summary paperwork necessary for certification was e-mailed to FAA officials in Los Angeles via a satellite communication link from the Connexion One airplane flying 35,000 feet above New Mexico. The document and supporting material, totaling 800KBytes, were transmitted to FAA officials in real time in less than 30 seconds.

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