In a welcomed shift in policy, business aircraft operators may now forego the STC process when installing class-B terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS). That was the word handed down by the FAA’s certification branch to FSDOs recently, published as a flight standards airworthiness bulletin (FSAW 02-03A) directed to avionics safety inspectors.
Terrain awareness and warning system
Elliott Aviation has received FAA STCs for installing Universal flat-panel integrated displays (FPIDs), Universal TAWS and Collins AHRS in Citation 550/560s. The Universal FPID STC replaces the standard Citation electromechanical or EFIS ADI and HSI flight instruments with Universal EFI-550 five-inch LCD FPIDs. Two-, three- or five-tube installation options are available.
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.
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.
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.
Universal Avionics of Tucson, Ariz., has been quietly strengthening its foothold in the cockpit retrofit market, branching out with a variety of available upgrades based on the company’s flat-panel display technology.
Showing signs that it is getting back on a solid footing after nearly being KO’d by an ugly patent lawsuit, Sandel Avionics announced that three regional airlines have chosen its ST3400 terrain awareness and warning system to provide TAWS compliance for their Beech 1900 fleets.
The typical business airplane at different points in its lifetime will receive overhauled engines, a refurbished interior and more than a few coats of fresh paint, along with a host of required periodic maintenance checks and upgrades, all of which constitute the obligatory costs of operating a business jet or turboprop.
Recent improvements and upgrades to the software that drives Chelton’s FlightLogic synthetic-vision EFIS have been keeping the company’s R&D engineering staff almost as busy as it was in the months leading to certification of the avionics system.
New tools exist to prevent those accidents that most worry safety experts.