Honeywell is nearing the approval finish line for major avionics software upgrades in Gulfstreams flying with PlaneView avionics and Dassault Falcons equipped with the EASy cockpit, both of which are based on the avionics maker’s Primus Epic integrated flight deck.
Wide Area Augmentation System
The FAA’s recent decision to permit Waas LPV upgrades of Universal Avionics FMS equipment under a basic field approval instead of an aircraft-specific STC could benefit thousands of Part 25 business jet operators, even if they don’t fly with Universal gear. The change, adopted after months of back-and-forth meetings between the FAA and the Tucson, Ariz.
Using the stage at Oshkosh to make several product announcements, Avidyne introduced a lower-priced version of its next-gen flight management system called the FMS400 and rolled out three pricing levels for the Release 9 version of its Entegra integrated avionics system.
Garmin has rolled out a sub-$16,000 avionics system that’s certified for installation in nearly 600 Class I and II Part 23 airplanes (defined as singles and twins weighing less than 6,000 pounds). The Garmin G500 avionics system, introduced at last month’s EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wis., includes primary and multifunction displays mounted in a single bezel that can slide into the opening previously occupied by an instrument six-pack.
Rockwell Collins last month wrapped up flight testing of a WAAS/LPV (wide-area augmentation system/localizer performance with vertical guidance) upgrade for the Pro Line 21 avionics system in the Hawker 800XP. The STC issued last month will allow Hawker 800XP operators equipped with Pro Line 21 to take advantage of the more than 1,500 WAAS/LPV approaches created so far.
Testifying before Congress in May, Stanford University professor Brad Parkinson–the chief architect of GPS and the original GPS program manager before his retirement from the USAF–echoed the concern of the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that there will be insufficient backup satellites to fill gaps in the constellation before the DOD’s forecast 2014 launches of its next-generation GPS III units. (see AIN, June, page one.)
Chicago Jet Group, located at Aurora Municipal Airport, has gained an STC for installing dual Universal Avionics UNS-1Fw and UNS-1Lw flight management systems in the Dassault Falcon 50. The STC includes approval for 3-D coupled Waas GPS (Rnav) and localizer performance with vertical guidance approaches (LPV).
Duncan Aviation recently delivered its first Learjet 45 with Waas LPV certification by installing dual UNS-1Ew FMS units. The STC covers the Learjet 40 and 45 series. Duncan plans to offer the same Universal approval with LPV certification for the Astra SPX/Gulfstream G100 and is working with Honeywell on its upcoming dual NZ-2000 FMS with Waas LPV certification for the Falcon 900.
West Star Aviation recently installed dual Waas-capable Universal UNS-1Ew flight management systems in a Learjet 60. The upgrade also included an L-3 Avionics GH-3100 solid-state standby altitude/airspeed and vertical speed indicator, dual Rockwell Collins RTU-4220 radio tuning units, Universal MFD-890 display with ASU (application file server) and a WSI weather datalink system.
On March 10 next year the FAA is expected to issue its final rule covering mandatory equipage of ADS-B avionics, and agency officials are tight lipped about what, if any, changes will be made to the original draft rule offered for industry comment early last year.