Tragic events from 2014 have prompted Malaysia Airlines to sign up for a new system, which will allow the airline to track the whereabouts of its planes, every minute.

Earlier this week, and over three years after the the disappearance of MH370 and its 239 passengers, the Kuala Lumpur-based carrier announced it will be the first to use Aircom FlightTracker, a minute-by-minute tracking data system.

Described as “the biggest improvement in flight tracking since radar was introduced in World War 2”, the technology (created by Aireon and FlightAware) utilises 66 space-based satellites to surveillance aircraft and relay real-time aircraft position updates.

Malaysia Airlines

According to FlightAware’s Chief Executive, Daniel Baker, Aircom FlightTracker will be able to track Malaysia Airlines’ planes “anywhere in the world”, even places that aren’t currently served by satellite constellations.

“It doesn’t matter if they’re flying over the ocean, if it’s over the desert, if it’s over the North Pole: We’ll know where the plane is.”

Daniel Baker, FlightAware Chief Executive

Although flight disappearances are scarce, the system can also be used to improve airline services by providing Air Navigation Service Providers with the information they need to reduce fuel costs, increase safety and enable more efficient flight paths.

Malaysia Airlines 2

“We are proud to be the first airline to adopt this solution using space-based ADS-B data as part of SITAONAIR’s AIRCOM® FlightTracker.”

Captain Izham Ismail, Malaysia Airlines Chief Operating Officer

The Aireon service will be operational in 2018, shortly after the completion of the Iridium NEXT satellite constellation. Learn more about the technology below:

Do you think this is a great move for Malaysia Airlines?