Avidyne Corp. announced on Feb. 22 that its IFD series of navigation and communication units created as slide-in upgrades to legacy navigators have been cleared for installation in Robinson helicopters.
The supplemental type certificate (STC) approved by the FAA covers IFD series installations in Robinson R66, R44, and R22 models, including Avidyne’s IFD540 and IFD440 integrated flight management devices, navigation and communication units, as well as the IFD 510 and IFD410 standalone navigation and flight management devices. Avidyne has long offered these devices as slide-in replacements in the fixed-wing world for legacy navigation systems from Garmin, and the new STC takes this battle for market share into the rotorcraft realm.
Company officials said the hybrid touch interface, which allows pilots to use either touchscreen inputs or traditional knobs and buttons, or both, as circumstances call for, is ideally suited for helicopter operations. In addition, the IFD100 app allows an iPad to serve as a display and accept control inputs through a wireless connection that affords the freedom to mount that Apple tablet anywhere the pilot wants it.
The STC covers both slide-in replacement and “green” installations.
“For many helicopter operators, the IFD provides significant performance and functional improvements in the same panel space where their old navigator sits today, with the addition of wireless capability for added safety and ease of use,” said Avidyne Vice President of Sales and Marketing Mitch Biggs in the news release.