Autopilot maker Meggitt/S-Tec has obtained an STC for installations of its new Magic 2100 digital flight-control system in the Cessna 441. The company’s first all-new autopilot since Meggitt acquired S-Tec two and a half years ago, the Magic 2100 DFCS is a three-axis system.
UK aerospace and defense firm Cobham’s decision to buy autopilot maker S-Tec from Meggitt for $38 million could signal the emergence of a revitalized competitor in the market for integrated GA avionics systems.
French avionics maker Thales is in Toulouse developing an all-new flight deck for the ATR -600 series–the newly launched pair of upgrades to the now Honeywell-equipped ATR 42-500 and 72-500 regional turboprops. The new avionics suite features five 6- by 8-inch LCD displays and overall lighter hardware.
Garmin last month said it has gained its first STC covering installation of a retrofit version of the G1000 avionics system. Approved in the King Air C90A/GT, the G1000 suite integrates primary flight information, navigation data, communications, terrain awareness, traffic, weather and engine instruments on a 15-inch-diagonal multifunction display and two 10.4-inch primary flight displays.
UK aerospace and defense firm Cobham yesterday announced an agreement to purchase autopilot maker S-Tec from Meggitt for $38 million. S-Tec’s Mineral Wells, Texas operation and its workforce of 180 employees will be added to Cobham’s portfolio of avionics businesses in North America, which also includes Chelton Flight Systems, Wulfsburg, NAT and Artex.
Operators of U.S.-registered CitationJets must disengage the pitch-trim/ autopilot circuit breakers to prevent runaway pitch trim, a condition that has led to at least one accident, according to an October 21 AD (2203-21-17). A CitationJet was ditched on July 22 in Penn Cove in Coupeville, Wash., following a loss of elevator trim control, resulting in an uncommanded nose-down pitch attitude.
During its 50-year history the Twin Commander line of business aircraft has occupied a special niche. Today, just as when the original purpose-built corporate and executive transport, the $45,000 Aero Commander Model 520, entered the market in January 1952, a high percentage of these aircraft–even the turbine-powered models–are flown not by full-time professional pilots but by their owners.
Thunder Aviation of Chesterfield, Mo. has received a group STC for an RVSM retrofit for Falcon 20s equipped with the Collins AP-105 autopilot. Follow-on STC amendments covering similarly equipped Falcon 10s are forthcoming, as well as amendments for Falcon 10s and 20s equipped with the SPZ 500 autopilot.
When Piper introduced the Meridian in 2001, it marked the return of the Vero Beach, Fla.-based manufacturer to the turboprop market and the end of a nine-year hiatus since the Cheyenne production line went quiet in 1992.
The 24 deadly seconds of the Sept. 14, 1999, Dassault Falcon 900 in-flight upset are under scrutiny by the Athens First Degree Court. The trial, which started May 13, was expected to last several days and was still ongoing at press time. The court has been asked to decide if the accident was due to pilot error, a technical malfunction or a combination of the two.