July 27, 2012
By Ian J. Twombly
With technology comes complexity. Redbird and King Schools have worked together to try to take the complexity out of iPad apps by developing a device that allows for training on the ground.
Called Cygnus, the setup fools the iPad into thinking it’s in the air, allowing for full functionality of moving map applications.
Essentially, Cygnus is the link between a simulator and the iPad. Users can run either Microsoft Flight Sim or XPlane. They then connect the iPad to the simulator directly through a cable or wirelessly through a Bad Elf GPS that sends GPS signal to the iPad via Bluetooth. The iPad receives the GPS signal the same either way, taking the simulator position as if it were real.
Since the setup is app agnostic, it allows for training in any piece of software that accepts a standard iPad GPS signal. The result is full functionality in a controlled environment.
Cygnus sells for $199 for the cable version and $499 for the wireless version, which also includes the Bad Elf GPS that can be used independently if desired.
Flight Training Editor Ian J. Twombly joined AOPA in 2003 and is an instrument flight instructor.
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