After months of waiting, Sagem Avionics says it is tantalizingly close to receiving its first FAA supplemental type certification (STC) for the company’s Integrated Cockpit Display System retrofit cockpit.
EADS Socata’s latest TBM 850 business/utility aircraft is now available with an upgraded cockpit, based on a Garmin G1000 avionics suite. Pilots should benefit from uncluttered information display and better situational awareness. The TBM 850’s panel looks like that of the Cessna Citation Mustang very light jet, which is also based on the G1000, but Socata has customized the system to its six-seater.
The first Falcon business jet with the EASy (enhanced avionics) flight deck from Honeywell took off February 21 from Bordeaux-Mérignac (France) Airport for its maiden flight. The EASy-equipped Dassault Falcon 900EX, S/N 97, is now in the development test phase.
As the FAA continues to wrestle with the issue of whether to allow portable electronic devices to be used for viewing approach charts during commercial IFR operations, pilots of Part 91 business jets who have been flying with the so-called electronic flight bag (EFB) computers for the past year are expressing generally favorable opinions of the devices.
Pilots are taught from the first day of flight training that flying an airplane is all about situational awareness–visualizing where they are in relation to the rest of the world. The task becomes more daunting when pilots lose visual reference to the ground, such as during IFR operations, because presented with nothing but two-dimensional graphics or text data, the visualization must take place in the pilot’s mind.
Universal Avionics, the Tucson, Ariz. avionics manufacturer known best for its line of FMS equipment, anticipates gaining FAA certification early next year for civil aviation’s first commercially available synthetic-vision primary flight display system.
Based on feedback it has received from pilots and operators, the FAA is said to be preparing a number of amendments to an earlier Advisory Circular (AC 120-76) stipulating how so-called electronic flight bags (EFBs) may be used in the cockpit. According to those who attended a meeting hosted by FAA officials in Alexandria, Va., last month, the agency plans to introduce the amendments to the AC in January.
Flight Options, the Cleveland-based provider of fractional-ownership shares in pre-owned business jets, has started to explore the possibility of developing common cockpit layouts across most of its fleet.
Avidyne, the Lincoln, Mass. maker of light airplane avionics, has unveiled a fully integrated cockpit for piston airplanes, turboprops and entry-level jets. The company claims the new system merges cutting-edge technology with low-cost electronics and sensors and promises to “revolutionize” general aviation.
With more and more pilots bidding farewell to paper approach charts and turning to the convenience of handheld flight-deck computers, official word from the FAA stipulating exactly how such devices may be used in the cockpit has been eagerly anticipated by the industry for some time.