Rockwell Collins has sent its workhorse Sabreliner 50 business jet to what might be the world’s best retirement home, the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum in McMinnville, Ore. The Sabreliner, a 1964 model, was the flying testbed for many key Rockwell Collins avionics products and logged about 8,000 hours and more than 5,000 landings since the Collins division of Rockwell International bought the jet in 1976. The job of flight-testing new Rockwell Collins systems falls on the shoulders of the company’s Challenger 601.
Satellite communications service provider Satcom Direct has unveiled the company’s first certified aviation hardware product, a router that integrates with any satcom and manages cabin communications, runs software apps and connects to 3G/4G cellular networks. The new Satcom Direct Router (SDR) weighs less than 10 pounds, meets DO-160G and DO-178B Level E (soon D) standards and will be available in May. “We wanted to make this [router] as robust and flexible as possible,” said Jim Jensen, Satcom Direct founder and owner.
West Coast Aircraft Maintenance has been appointed a JSSI-approved maintenance facility. JSSI provides hourly cost maintenance programs for turbine-powered aircraft.
Sales manager Alfredo Garcia told AIN, “We’ll be supporting any JSSI customer with major and minor maintenance, AOG support, interior work and avionics support.”
AirSatOne released a new version of the Flightstream AOC AvSat router with a wireless interface to already installed and certified airborne Wi-Fi systems. The Flightstream router is classified as a portable electronic device and thus “operational approval is covered under the original Wi-Fi STC,” according to AirSatOne. Available now at a retail price of $7,330, the Flightstream router helps make communications between mobile devices and airborne telecom systems more efficient by optimizing, accelerating and compressing satcom messages.
Mid-Canada Mod Center has signed a dealer agreement with Satcom Direct. A provider of global satellite communications, Satcom Direct is best known for its success in pioneering 10-digit dialing service to aircraft in flight. Branded Global One Number, the technology allows callers on the ground to reach any handset on board an aircraft in flight by dialing a single telephone number regardless of where the aircraft is located. Satcom Direct also offers FlightDeck Freedom, a datalink service that is compatible with all avionics and airframe manufacturers.
Garmin unveiled its first radar altimeter–the GRA 5500–yesterday. An all-digital design that employs digital signal processing technology, the GRA 5500 already holds FAA TSO authorization and is available immediately, at a retail price of $13,995 (without antenna).
Several OEMs have already selected the GRA 5500 for upcoming aircraft, including new versions of the Cessna Citation X, Sovereign, Latitude and Longitude and Bell Helicopter’s 525 Relentless.
Satcom Direct of Satellite Beach, Fla., will be touring the U.S. during June and July to promote new products and features, including updates on new mobile applications, maintenance training and troubleshooting.
Free training for Satcom Direct users includes hands-on work in the Satcom Direct mobile lab, a 40-foot Monaco Diplomat Coach, and features services from satellite providers Inmarsat, ViaSat Yonder and Iridium.
Three de Havilland Canada DHC-6-300 Twin Otters operated by Tac Air out of Coronado, Calif., are getting a new outlook on life thanks to Pacific Coast Avionics. The Aurora, Ore. company has a contract to design and install custom panels and a new avionics system. The aircraft are used for civilian and military jump training.
Embraer expects to reveal its choice of several major systems contractors for its new second-generation E-Jets over the next three or four months, Embraer Commercial Aviation COO Luis Carlos Affonso told AIN last week as the company announced it is retaining Honeywell as the supplier for the series’ avionics suite and flight management computer. Further contract awards over the next few months will likely go to suppliers of the airplanes’ fly-by-wire system, APU electric system and air management system.
Rockwell Collins sees big opportunities in India for military avionics and communications systems, according to Ram Prasad, the U.S. electronics group’s managing director for India.