Installation requirements

The Civil Aviation Authority is proposing that
if you want to fly in controlled airspace at any altitude after 31 December 2021, you will need to be
ADS-B OUT equipped.

NSS also propose that if you want to fly in controlled airspace at any altitude after 31 December 2021, you will also need to be ADS-B OUT equipped.

The ADS-B OUT mandates will only apply to controlled airspace, as it’s required there for aircraft separation.

However, even if you don’t fly in controlled airspace, there are benefits to equipping with ADS-B OUT:


visibility to other aircraft who have ADS-B IN


visibility to ATC, especially if you get into trouble


improved resale value of your aircraft

Performance standards

The performance requirements for ADS-B OUT systems are set for the data transmitted by the on-board ADS-B OUT system. The standards ensure that the ADS-B OUT data transmitted by aircraft can be used by the ATS.

The performance standards for ADS-B OUT systems are:


Please note TSO 166 can only be used for existing installations.
Must provide a NUCp of 4 or greater

TSO-C166a and TSO-C166b

NACp figure must be 5 or greater

NACv figure must be 1 or greater

SDA must be 2 or greater

For TSO-C166a, the SIL must be 2 or greater

For TSO-C166b, the SIL must be 3 or greater

  • Any changes in the NACp, NACv, SDA, and SIL must be broadcast within 10 seconds
  • Changes in the NIC must be broadcast within 12 seconds
  • ADS-B OUT transponders must transmit updates at least once a second

Please note: New installations must meet TSO-C166b requirements. However, if you have an existing installation, it can meet TSO-C166 and TSO- C166a requirements.

Low power ADS-B transponders (LPAT)

The CAA is investigating whether other types of ADS-B equipment, such as low power ADS-B transceivers and uncertified GNSS position source information, can be safely integrated into an ADS-B surveillance environment.

These considerations will be tested with the Future Surveillance Implementation Working Group (FSIWG) and will be included for comment in the policy discussion document when it is released. If you have any questions about the LPAT considerations, please contact

Existing Mode S transponder

If you have a Mode S transponder, you’ll need to check with your avionics shop to see if it is ADS-B OUT capable. Not all Mode S transponders are ADS-B OUT capable. Some Mode S transponders can be upgraded to enable extended squitter functionality.

If you are upgrading your Mode A/C transponder, we strongly suggest you buy an ES capable Mode S transponder, even if you don’t currently fly in controlled airspace. You can buy a transponder first and add a GNSS position source later. Make sure that the transponder and the GNSS receiver are compatible.

Cheaper ADS-B systems overseas – buyer beware

New technologies are becoming available, particularly in the area of GNSS receivers. Please check the fine print and make sure the transponder you’re considering broadcasts on 1090 MHz, not 978 MHz. The advertising information is not relevant to New Zealand. UAT will not work in New Zealand.

As we consider options for the proposed mandate for ADS-B in all controlled airspace, we are considering whether and how we can provide for 1090 MHz ADS-B OUT systems that are cheaper and/or lighter. Any new technologies will need to meet the performance standards set in the NTC 91.258.

All-in-one ADS-B solutions

You can now buy ADS-B systems that include the transponder and GNSS receiver in a single unit. These are ‘all-in-one-box’ ADS-B systems. However, installing an all-in-one system still involves a modification. They can be cheaper than buying and installing the separate components, and you will have the assurance that the transponder and GNSS receiver are compatible. Some all-in-one systems include ADS-B IN and a touchscreen display.

The GNSS receiver on the all-in-one solutions cannot be used for navigation when operating under Instrument Flight Rules (IFR).

You can discuss all-in-one ADS-B solutions with your avionics supplier.

Avionic shops that can provide advice guidance and installations of ADS-B.

If you’re an avionics specialist but your details are not listed here, please contact us and we’ll add you. 

If you have questions about ADS-B equipment, installation or certification, email them to

Email questions about the ADS-B rule or policy to

Installation Process

The process for installing ADS-B on your type certified aircraft is described here.

Please talk to your Part 149 organisation about the process for installing ADS-B on a microlight, glider or amateur built aircraft.

Owners of light sport aircraft should talk to their OEM regarding getting ADS-B Equipped.