August 2, 2013
By Sarah Brown
Avidyne Corp. has completed the design phase of its IFD540 and IFD440 and expects to submit the 540 for certification by the end of 2013, Avidyne President and CEO Dan Schwinn said July 29 at EAA AirVenture.
The local FAA office has assured the company that sequestration-induced budget cuts will not slow certification programs, Schwinn said, and so Avidyne expects a quick turnaround. Certification of the IFD440, which shares hardware and a code base with the IFD540, will follow the larger unit; Schwinn estimated it would be certified three to six months later. The IFD540 and IFD440 are plug-and-play replacements for the Garmin GNS530 and GNS430 GPS navigators, respectively.
Schwinn said the company is showing the final IFD540 hardware for the first time at EAA AirVenture. The unit, which uses technology from Avidyne’s Entegra Release 9 systems, has what the company calls a hybrid touch interface, with a touchscreen as well as physical buttons. Avidyne said it has completed a usability study with the FAA and expects to make some changes before certification, although nothing significant.
During the press briefing July 29, Schwinn also provided an update on the AMX240 audio panel with intercom, a slide-in replacement for the Garmin GMA340 and PS Engineering PS8000 series audio panels; the AMX240 is expected to be available around the same time as the 540, Schwinn said.
In a similar certification timeline as the IFD540 is the AXP340 Mode S transponder, a replacement for the KT76A. Paired with Avidyne’s TAS-A with VeriTAS traffic advisory system (TAS), the transponder completes a full Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) solution.
TAS-A with VeriTAS combines traditional TAS performance in low-ADS-B-coverage areas with the more accurate returns of ADS-B wherever ADS-B-equipped aircraft or Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Rebroadcast (ADS-R) ground stations are nearby. Schwinn said Avidyne has developed predictive collision logic that evaluates the flight paths of aircraft “with a goal of greatly reducing nuisance alerts.”
With the VeriTAS system, aircraft are surrounded by two zones of protection. The first, the protected airspace zone, is wider and dynamic, taking into account the trajectory of various aircraft and the likelihood of their paths coming together. A smaller collision airspace zone is a smaller “hockey puck” around the aircraft.
FAA Information and Services,
Pilot responsibilities include requesting clarification or amendment whenever the pilot does not fully understand a clearance or considers it unacceptable from a safety standpoint.
AOPA expressed concern in a meeting with town officials from East Hampton, New York, that restrictions proposed to curb airport noise “overwhelmingly” generated by transient commercial flights would unfairly burden traditional airport users.
The FAA on Feb. 23 issued a special airworthiness information bulletin recommending preflight inspection of Robinson R44 and R44 II main rotors.
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