Singapore Air Show

CMC Succeeds With Cockpit Upgrades

 - February 12, 2014, 9:45 PM
Brent Nelson is the director of Esterline’s Cockpit 9000 program. The updated avionics suite has been successfully transplanted in Lockheed’s C-130, extending service life by as much as three decades.

Esterline CMC (Booth T87) is celebrating a couple of milestone contract awards here at the Singapore Airshow this week, as well as showcasing its main avionics products–including its popular Cockpit 9000 CNS/ATM update solution for legacy Lockheed C-130 Hercules aircraft. This is aimed at extending the service life of 20-40 year-old aircraft by up to 30 years, future-proofing them against advances in ATC technology.

The Canadian company has been awarded a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) by the U.S. FAA for its IntegriFlight GPS landing system for ADS-B operations on the Boeing 737, and has also been selected to supply its PilotView Class 2 Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) for the new Bombardier CSeries regional/narrowbody twin-jet. PilotView products represent another major feature on the company’s stand here this week.

For the CSeries, Esterline CMC will also supply its PilotView Aircraft Information Server, which like the EFB will be available as an option to CSeries customers–along with a dual laptop docking station option. This can be interfaced to the EFB.

The CMA-1612 EFB features a 12.1-inch LED backlit display with multi-touch support, and uses an Intel Core i7 processor.

Speaking to AIN before the show, director EFB products Jean-Marie Bégis said “This will be the first application for AIS, which can support a range of applications in both retrofit and forward-fit, and wireless-enable to cockpit.” He said that there were customers already but that they could not yet be disclosed.

The new 737 STC was based on the requirements of Qantas for the Australian airline’s 737 postal freighters, under a contract awarded in 2012. The equipment fit includes the Esterline CMC Electronics CMA-5024 IntegriFlight SBAS (satellite-based augmentation system)-capable GPS sensor, with Qantas performing the installation work and leading the certification application to Australian regulator, CASA. ASM (Aircraft Systems & Manufacturing) provided the installation kit, certification support and on-site support. The CMA-5024 was already certificated by the FAA and Transport Canada to TSO-C145c Beta-3 and TSO-146c Delta-4 standards, the most stringent for GPS receivers, the latter allowing use for Precision Approach guidance signals to the aircraft’s autopilot for LPV (Localizer Precision with Vertical guidance) approaches. “Any aircraft equipped with CMA-5024 is inherently ready to support future ADS-B operational regulations in both remote and high-density traffic areas,” said the company.

Don Paolucci, general manager FMS & GPS products, said that the company also offered FMS upgrades for Airbus A300/A310s, with certification being achieved in December. “It’s almost like a heart transplant,” he said, adding that it has grown out of the company work helping to develop and install an FMS in the Sukhoi Superjet aircraft. “We have adapted the basic core to the retrofit market. We program the equipment with the database that knows the performance capabilities of the aircraft, so you can fly optimal decent profiles and save fuel, do idle descents, and RNP approaches.”

The company sees a significant market opportunity retrofitting A300s, of which there are several hundred still flying. The first fit has been to the Canadian Department of National Defence’s five CC-150 Polaris aircraft, which are modified A310s. The fit includes the CMA-9000 FMS and CMA-4024 GPS sensors, allowing FANS-1 functionality to be added as well under the contract.

CMC was originally known as the Canadian Marconi Company and, following ownership by GE and later by BAE Systems, it was sold to Esterline (based in Bellevue, WA) in 2007.