I don't know anything about planes (mechanics,electroinics,etc...) so bare with me (and the long post)!
In the USA
With ADS-B coming due in a few years, more GA are implementing their planes with ADS-B Out. They will call approach (who knows nothing about it) and in-turn they call us (center) for the answer. Or if they want to be "nice" they just have the pilot dial our frequency and the GA pilot will ask us (not fun sometimes).
All the GA pilot wants to do is verify with "FAA" that their ADS-B is working (center can see that it works, we have a button to toggle on and off). Once we tell them yes/no they are off the frequency. Sounds simple!!
The issue is Center, Tech-Ops, Supervisors.... don't know anything about ADS-B verification. I've taken upon myself to learn this in hopes to inform other controllers.
What equipment do you have to have for ADS-B? Mode A/C transponder only or do you also need Mode S too? Is ADS-B tied into Mode S or are they completely 2 different components?
Do you need a Mode S transponder to fly? (I think from what I read Part 121 ..commercial you do, but not required for GA if inside the US)
Does the ADS-B get registered to the N number or the air frame (not sure how you split that up)
What is an Example of an ADS-B "code" ? ....to clarify...If it is registered to the tail number, I would assume you have to register a specific "code" to tie the 2 together.
Is the ICAO hex number the same as the ADS-B number/code?
The reason I ask these question is for processing. A GA will call up and we will attempt to put in a flight plan mid flight (they pop up vfr and we try to work this out together) I tell them I need to give them a code to identify them and start a flight plan. I feel like when everything is entered, I am still missing something that needs to be entered to make sure the computer is aware the plane is ADS-B equipped. If it is tied to the tail number, once I create flight plan mid flight, it should auto acquire whether it is ADS-B equipped with no extra info input.
I ask about ICAO hex because I see some ADS-B equipped GA with hex numbers in the system and some do not have hex numbers but still verified ADS-B equipped. I want to know if they are both needed!!!
I also see Commercial flights with no hex number in the system too but I assume they all should.
Thanks, ZOB controller