West Star Aviation in Grand Junction, Colo., is working with the FAA to amend its Learjet 35/36 RVSM STC to include models with the FC-530 autopilot, FC-200 autopilot and Mark IV wings, FC-200 autopilot and non-Softflite Century III wings or FC-531 autopilot and Century III Softflite wings. The amended STC will allow about 70 to 80 additional 30-series Learjets to meet RVSM equipment requirements.
Avionics and ATC » Avionics
New developments and products in avionics, specifically about aircraft electronics in the cockpit.
Business jet operators knew three years ago that they would have to be equipped with approved ELTs by January 1 this year or be grounded until the installation was made. Many operators apparently didn’t take this notice seriously (maybe counting on the FAA to delay compliance, as it has a history of doing) and waited until the last minute to make arrangements for the installation. Or they simply forgot about it.
In a landmark decision, the FAA has adopted a final rule allowing the use of HUD-based enhanced vision systems (EVS) for descent below published instrument approach minimums.
In the runup to the planned January 20 implementation of reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) in the U.S., Canada, South America and Mexico, the FAA has released new guidance documents to assist operators seeking to comply with the requirements of the new operating rules.
Thunder Aviation in Chesterfield, Mo., and Flight Test Associates of Mojave, Calif., are working on an RVSM solution for Falcon 20s equipped with Honeywell Bendix/King KFC 400 autopilots. A group STC is scheduled before the end of the month. Thunder Aviation is also expecting an amendment to its RVSM STC for Falcon 20s equipped with Collins AP105 autopilots that will add similarly equipped Falcon 10s.
The next generation of airborne weather radars won’t just see the storms, they will remember what they have scanned and store that information in a computer database.
Certification of the infrared enhanced vision system (EVS) for the Bombardier Global Express XRS–said to be “imminent” at press time–will close an important technology gap between Gulfstream and Bombardier, head-to-head competitors in the ultra-long-range business jet market.
In the past several years, avionics manufacturers have introduced a wide range of multifunction displays (MFDs) capable of integrating moving-map information, terrain warnings, traffic, weather and other sensor inputs. The trouble was, nearly all of these units required a relatively large opening for them to fit in the panel.
The NTSB is recommending modifications of Honeywell flight management system (FMS) software that would provide warnings to pilots if they try to enter inconsistent weight and performance information.
On the morning of June 18, 1994, a Learjet 25D carrying 10 passengers and two pilots crashed less than a mile from the threshold of Runway 1R on approach to Dulles International Airport.