ADS-B 2020 compliant?

Our family business just purchased a 2012 SR22T. I’m a low-time pilot who is just becoming familiar with the Cirrus, and in reading aviation magazine articles I wonder if it is compliant for the FAA 2020 mandate regarding ADS-B. Thanks for any insights,



Congrats. Join COPA. All Cirrus Owners and Pilots should be members. There is lots of discussion on ADS-B in the member forums. Lots of other good safety, training and ownership discussions.

Come on in the water is fine.

Try putting your tail number in and then check the track log. If you have ADS-B, it should say that in the far right column.

thanks for tip on ads-b did not know that about flight aware. I have a 12 and it’s there . Don

Can you give more details as to where it is shown on flightaware? I am not seeing it for my plane which is a little concerning given the price I paid for it!

It was an option when I bought my 2012 so it is possible some may not have it installed.

The plane in your profile, N327AM, claims to be an SR22-G1, so it certainly didn’t come with ADS-B from the factory. If you look up your last flight in Flight Aware, under the Facility, you can see Chicago Center, not “Flightaware ADS-B”, so you don’t appear to be seen as an ADS-B target.


Not necessarily. Today Chicago center verified that my ADS-B was working, but FlightAware does not reflect that. I would not count on FlightAware.

Andy, you are correct. I just checked further back in one of my other flights and there was a time where Flightaware did in fact show me as ADS-B. I think this is more an issue with how Flightaware gets its feed and whether or not ATC is truely up to date on their side. My local approach control cannot see my ADS-B signal. The answer I got was “we don’t have the ability to see it”.


Oh good. I’m glad it’s working for you. I do know that FlightAware’s coverage is based on a network of volunteer receivers so obviously your flight will only be tracked where they have receivers that are turned on and reporting back to FlightAware. Plus, they don’t report a lot of VFR flights - mostly just IFR.

Are the volunteers receiving 1090ES, or UAT?

Well the only thing they mention on their receiver page is mode S so I’m guessing 1090ES?

I am not an avionics expert, but to me, all current mode S transponder are certified ADS-B out. The only thing you need is a certified IFR GPS connected to it. so, it should not be too difficult to get your bird compliant. blue skies.

JGM Tensfeldt:
I do know that FlightAware’s coverage is based on a network of volunteer receivers

Not really. They do have volunteers with ADS-B receivers but most of their data comes from the FAA and other government agencies.

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Not true. Many mode S transponders were built and installed that are not ADS-B compliant. To be compliant they need to be the “Extended Squitter” variety and most ES revisions became available only in the last couple of years.

Many mode S transponders can be converted to ES models. For example my GTX330 is currently at Garmin for an ES upgrade. Relatively inexpensive revision at 1200 bucks and uses the current tray, antenna, etc… and the addition of one wiring and you are done.

Jerome, ‘What Roger Said’. Mode S and ADS-B are two entirely different critters. AFAIK, Mode S has been installed in all, or almost all, Cirrus & shows altitude to ATC. A year ago, i had to replace the ‘Encoder’ on my Transponder, that is the device therein that displays Altitude. Just recently, I saw a plane near me on SkyWatch, but it didn’t give Altitude in relation to myself, first i’d ever seen like that. I am guessing he had no Mode S.

I should have said “the Encoder is the device in the Transponder that TRANSMITS OUT the altitude”, can’t correct on iCOPA

Thank you all for your correction. I was told ES was not necessary for ADS-B out but for ADS-B Out and In Since XPDR mode S already emits 56 bits on the freq. It looks I need to budget it. Thanks again all.

Well, I don’t think that’s quite right. This is what I believe is true:

  • If you have no transponder (and no UAT), ATC can see your position as a “primary target” (i.e. the radar actually sees your metal/plastic target), with no altitude readout. ATC will sometimes say, “traffic 2 o’clock, unknown altitude, primary target only” in reference to these guys and you won’t see them on Skywatch.

  • Mode “A” transponders associate the squawk code with your radar target, but there is no altitude information. This is what our transponders will output when the altitude encoder is not functional, or when you turn then to “ON” instead of “ALT”. You’ll see these targets, without altitude, on Skywatch if it is configured appropriately, and ATC will say, “traffic 2 o’clock, altitude unknown” in reference to them.

  • Mode “C” transponders have been mandated in some airspace for 30 or 40 years now, and all Cirruses have at least a Mode “C” transponder. This uses the information from the altitude encoder to provide altitude along with position (and squawk code) to ATC. You’ll see these targets, with altitude, on Skywatch.

  • Mode “S” transponders have been required for some types of aircraft for a while (transport category planes have had them for a long time), but not for GA aircraft like ours; they will provide a unique identifier to ATC, in addition to the information provided by Mode C. although you typically still need to enter a squawk code. The Garmin 330 is an example of this type of transponder.

  • Mode “S” with extended squitter (ES) is one method to comply with the ADS-B output mandate. Using a UAT is another method to comply with the ADS-B mandate.

No matter what you use to comply with ADS-B out mandate, you will still need a transponder (either Mode C or Mode S) to fly in certain types of airspace, just as you do today.