Hot section: First avidyne EX600 MFD Installed in a Helicopter

 - August 2, 2010, 7:31 AM

Vista Aviation of Pacoima, Calif., has completed the first helicopter installation of the Avidyne EX600 multifunction display (MFD). The installation was completed in a Eurocopter AStar AS350B and approved under an FAA Form 337. “We have installed quite a few Avidyne MFDs and we were excited about being the first dealer to install an EX600 into a helicopter,” said Bill DeBarmore, Vista Aviation’s avionics manager.

“The customer wanted the EX600 specifically because of its easy user interface and one-touch panning capability, which reduces pilot workload. The installation went smoothly, and the customer was delighted with how it turned out.”

According to DeBarmore, the EX600 provides significant advantages for the helicopter operator, including its overall ease of use and a versatile radar and safety-sensor interface compatibility.

The installation includes an all-new 5.8-inch diagonal, 640- by 480-pixel display, Avidyne’s new map panning keys and their exclusive QuickPan function, which allows the pilot to toggle quickly between the present position and a panned-to position–such as destination airport–with a single button push. The installation also includes Avidyne’s TAS610 traffic advisory system, a TWX670 color tactical lightning display, and an MLX770 two-way datalink transceiver. The EX600 starts at $9,990, and existing EX500 owners can get upgraded to an EX600 starting at $5,495.