SKYTRAC Patent Offers High-Accuracy Flight Tracking for Bill-By-The-Mile Operators

October 16, 2017 – SKYTRAC has received a Canadian patent with US patent pending for a bill-by-the-mile flight tracking solution that allows air ambulance operators to improve the accuracy of reporting on billable distances.

“To minimize their satellite communications costs, most operators opt to receive GPS position reports only every one or two minutes. The assumption is that an aircraft travels in a straight path between these reporting intervals. In most industries, this is sufficient to safely monitor the position of aircraft in flight. However, for air ambulance operators where the client is billed based on a loaded mile, deviations in flight paths for weather, obstacles or air traffic control can add to the true cumulative distance travelled. When aggregated fleet-wide over time, this difference can have a significant revenue impact,” said SKYTRAC President Malachi Nordine.


The patented SKYTRAC high resolution tracking solution records flight data for every second of flight. This detailed flight path information is then compressed and sent over the Iridium satellite network at the operator’s standard one- or two-minute reporting interval.


“We are maximizing the data sent with each satellite transmission. With this 1-second flight path resolution, we’ve detected as much as a 15% improvement in billable distance on a single rotary flight. In developing this technology, our goal was to produce a more efficient flight following solution that allows operators with a bill-by-the-mile model to better manage their business by understanding true flight paths,” continued Nordine.


Sample showing mileage recorded without SKYTRAC high resolution data (inset) and with 1-second reporting (main screen)


SKYTRAC is aviation’s full-service, data-driven solutions provider. Since 1986, SKYTRAC has pioneered the development, evolution and commercialization of flight following, flight data and communications technology. Today, with systems certified on over 900 airframes and an online data management portal that is the go-to tool for over 6,500 global users, SKYTRAC is truly the partner of choice for data-guided business insights. From performance trending and operations reporting to real-time asset tracking and situational awareness – SKYTRAC offers a one-stop response to meeting more of your company’s needs. For more information go to


Jan Van der Heul
VP Sales, SKYTRAC Systems