Predicting the weather is a little like trying to pick up Jell-O before it sets. There are a lot of molecules up there, all interacting in less than predictable ways. It is a little surprising, then, that the head of one of the world’s foremost weather-data specialists says forecast accuracy is about to see vast improvements over and above what today’s computer modeling is capable of generating.
Avionics and ATC » Avionics
New developments and products in avionics, specifically about aircraft electronics in the cockpit.
The ability to surf the Internet while cruising through the lower stratosphere continues to get easier, and faster, thanks to the incremental upgrades being made to the capabilities of current high-speed data satcom systems.
The Magic 2100 digital flight-control system from Meggitt Avionics has gained STC approvals in the Twin Commander 690C/D and 695A/B (Models 840, 900, 980 and 1000) and the King Air 90, the company announced last month.
La Jolla, Calif.-based Blue Sky Network announced receipt of an STC and PMA approval for the D1000 flight-tracking and two-way messaging system, which operates over the Iridium satellite network.
Pilots know that the primary job of EGPWS is to keep them from running into the ground, but they might not be aware that it can also warn them if they are about to land on the wrong runway, take off from a taxiway or cross an active runway, among a host of other incursion-preventing functions.
Now that Avidyne’s relationship with Eclipse Aviation has ended, the Massachusetts avionics supplier says it’s ready to move on to other projects. For the time being that means targeting the expanding retrofit cockpit market, specifically for aging King Airs where older analog instruments are being removed in favor of modern glass displays.
Blue Sky Network has introduced a portable satellite communication device for tracking aircraft and transmitting text messages and short-code reports. About the size and weight of a car stereo, the carry-on D2000MA/MDA tracker supplies real-time position data and text messages between aircraft and ground crew over the Iridium satellite network.
Alternative Avionics in Waterford, Mich., has gained an STC for installation of upgraded air-data computers and pitot-static probes in the Hawker 700, a modification that the company said provides a pathway to RVSM approval while also improving autopilot functionality.
Aerospace and defense industry supplier Esterline last month wrapped up its acquisition of Canadian avionics maker CMC Electronics. According to Esterline CEO Robert Cremin, CMC Electronics will continue operating as a stand-alone business from its Montreal headquarters, where it supplies the business aviation market with electronic flight bag hardware, enhanced-vision cameras and flight management systems.
Avionics makers highlighted a number of intriguing technologies for helicopters at last month’s Heli-Expo in Orlando, Fla., none more buzz-worthy than the synthetic-vision system (SVS) concepts unveiled by Thales and Honeywell.