uAvionix received FAA supplemental type certificate (STC) approval for its tailBeacon integrated rear position light and Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out solution on Sept. 13.
Similar to the company’s popular skyBeacon, which replaces the aircraft’s left wingtip position light, the tailBeacon was designed for ease of installation—requiring less than one hour, including documentation, uAvionix said.
The tailBeacon system received FAA technical standard order (TSO) authorization on July 5. Actually, it received four separate TSOs, for ADS-B Out (TSO-C154c, Class B1S), GPS (TSO-C145e, Class Beta 1), barometric altitude sensor (TSO-C88b), and position light (TSO-C30c, Type III).
uAvionix said that at this time, there will not be a certified option specifically available for rotorcraft. Helicopter operators, especially those flying Robinson models, have expressed a lot of interest in the tailBeacon.
“While tailBeacon provides an excellent mechanical fit for many rotorcraft, the FAA has specific requirements regarding air/ground state, and uniquely interprets those as they relate to hover taxi and similar operations,” uAvionix said. “Because of the increased installation difficulty associated with satisfying these requirements, at this time there will not be a certified option specifically available for rotorcraft.”
Because of the timing delays surrounding the tailBeacon TSO and STC, uAvionix acknowledged that some aircraft owners who reserved the $500 FAA ADS-B rebate with the intention of installing a tailBeacon have seen their rebate applications expire. uAvionx apologized for that scenario and said that owners who have found themselves in that situation should email the company’s customer service team with proof of both a tailBeacon order and that the FAA rebate has expired; for a limited time it is offering a manufacturer’s rebate.
uAvionix said that tailBeacon production began at the company’s new manufacturing facility in Columbia Falls, Montana, as soon as the TSO was issued, and that shipments would begin immediately. To save time and simplify paperwork, the company has created a sample FAA Form 337 for tailBeacon installation.
tailBeacon is available from uAvionix online, through uAvionix authorized resellers, and via the company’s network of qualified installers.