Two more OEMs–Spectrum Aeronautical and Viking Air– have selected Honeywell’s Primus Apex avionics suite. Spectrum selected Apex for its S-40 Freedom midsize jet and Viking Air for the resurrected DHC-6-400 Twin Otter. This brings to four the number of airplanes that will feature the Primus Apex suite, the other two being Grob’s SPn and the new Pilatus PC-12 NG, which is the first Primus Apex-equipped airplane to enter service.
De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter
In its renewed premises at Zurich Airport, Zimex offers executive handling services, as well as maintenance, repair and overhaul for various types of aircraft, from the Cessna Caravan and de Havilland Twin Otter up to the Hawker 800, Learjet 45 and Falcon 2000.
The crews of a pair of de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otters made history last April when they flew a daring rescue mission into the depths of the Antarctic winter, landing at the South Pole to rescue an ailing doctor. The mission braved lethally low temperatures to make an unprecedented landing in the deep-freeze of the Antarctic winter at 90 deg South–the ultimate southern destination.
Viking Twin Otter series 400 airplanes will be equipped with an integrated suite of Primus Apex avionics from Honeywell Aerospace. The Apex platform offers Viking’s customers an avionics package that integrates aircraft systems, safety sensors and navigation information, decreases pilot workload and improves safety through enhanced situational awareness.
de Havilland DHC-6 Twin Otter, Surkhet, Nepal, July 17, 2002–All four (including two crewmembers) aboard the Skyline Airways Twin Otter (9N-AGF) were killed when it crashed on approach to Surkhet Airport (SKH) at approximately 1422 local time. The aircraft had departed from Jumla Airport (JUM) at 1404 for the 60-mi, 25-min flight.
de Havilland Canada DHC-6-100 Twin Otter, Sullivan, Mo., July 29, 2006–Witnesses reported that they saw “flame emitting from the right engine” while the turboprop was taking off from Sullivan Regional Airport on a skydiving flight in VMC.
After a nine-month selection process, the company that plans to bring the Twin Otter back into production has chosen Honeywell’s Primus Apex integrated flight deck for new-build airplanes expected to enter service next year. Honeywell describes the equipment as an “intuitive alternative for turboprops and light and midsize business jets.” The avionics have also been chosen for the Pilatus PC-12 and Grob SPn.
Viking Air told AIN it will use Honeywell Primus Apex avionics in the Twin Otter Series 400, which the company plans to build new at its facility in Victoria, British Columbia. A Honeywell spokesman confirmed that the avionics maker is “in final contract discussions with Viking Air to reach an agreement” on the deal.
Viking Air’s relaunch of the fabled Twin Otter is progressing on schedule, and the first modified airplane incorporating all the planned new features of the production airplane should fly in the fourth quarter. Delivery of the first newly manufactured and recertified Twin Otter to Swiss customer Zimex Aviation is planned for next year’s first quarter.
Some two months after announcing the relaunch of Twin Otter production, Canada’s Viking Aerospace began cutting metal on the first airplane at its final assembly plant in Calgary last month. Scheduled for delivery to Zurich’s Zimex Aviation in the first quarter of 2009, the first Twin Otter 400 will look virtually identical to the operator’s “legacy” Twin Otter 300s and offer the same 19 seats.