Civil aircraft in the 1990s didn’t look radically different from those of the previous 20 years but, as had happened in the previous decade, they were different beneath the familiar skin. Like the 1980s, the economy of the 1990s got off to a rough start, but this last decade of the millennium picked up a spectacular head of steam midway through its 10-year run.
L-3 Avionics Systems, the former Goodrich subsidiary that produces the well known Stormscope and Skywatch lines of cockpit safety systems, last month introduced a new class-B terrain awareness and warning system (TAWS) that the company said will have a list price of $12,500.
EMS Technologies announced last month that it has been selected by Honeywell and Thales Avionics to supply satcom components for the companies’ joint HS-720 high-speed-data satcom system. Under the terms of a seven-year agreement, EMS will develop custom avionics components for the Honeywell/Thales MCS-4000/7000 satcom systems.
Arinc and Norway telecommunications company Telenor have successfully completed ground testing of technology that lets passengers continue talking on their personal wireless phones after takeoff. The companies demonstrated the satellite-based concept at last month’s World Airline Entertainment Association conference, held September 20 to 24 in Seattle, and are holding talks with a number of airlines.
Cessna last month released class-A terrain awareness and warning system (TAWS) service bulletins covering installation of Honeywell’s EGPWS in a variety of Citation models spanning the 525 Citation CJ; 550 Bravo; 560 Ultra; and 550 Citation II. Cessna also announced that service bulletins for Sandel’s class-B TAWS will be available later this month for all Citation Model 500s in service.
Rockwell Collins has received the industry’s first TSO approval for a multi-mode receiver (MMR) with local-area augmentation system (LAAS) functionality, the avionics maker announced last month. The Collins GLU-925 MMR is the first to include LAAS and GPS landing system (GLS) capability in addition to ILS mode.
Although, sadly, the man most responsible for the accomplishment would not be around to see this day, Universal Avionics last month received FAA approval for the company’s EFI-890R retrofit cockpit in a Challenger. A week before the FAA awarded an STC for the Challenger series, on September 12, company founder Hubert Naimer died in Vienna, Austria, of natural causes at age 82.
Satellite TV for less than $100,000? That’s the deal being offered by in-flight entertainment specialist Flight Display Systems (FDS), an Alpharetta, Ga.-based cabin electronics manufacturer, which last month unveiled an all-new satellite TV system for business airplanes called Ellipse Direct.
The days following the unprecedented shutdown of the National Airspace System caused massive grumping and anguish in the corporate and general aviation community, exacerbated when the federal government allowed only “commercial” aircraft to resume flying.
In the aftermath of the U.S. terrorist attacks, general and business aviation is facing severe flight restrictions. For example, flights below 3,000 ft agl within a three-nautical-mile radius of any major professional or college sporting event or “any other major open-air assembly” are now prohibited throughout the U.S. VFR flying below, through or above enhanced Class B airspace was not allowed.