NBAA 09: Piper signs up as G3000 launch customer

Orlando
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Piper Aircraft has emerged as the first customer for the new Garmin G3000 integrated flightdeck, with Cirrus Aircraft poised to become the second customer next month.

Piper announced this afternoon that its new single-engined PiperJet will feature the G3000, which will be the industry's first touchscreen-controlled integrated flightdeck for turbine aircraft. Garmin launched the G3000 at NBAA yesterday, saying it had commitments from two unnamed manufacturers.

Flight Evening News understands that Cirrus also has selected the G3000 for its SF50 personal jet with an announcement planned for early November at the AOPA Aviation Summit in Tampa.

Piper president John Becker says the G3000 will help ease pilot workload on the PiperJet as it eliminates buttons, switches and extraneous knobs. "PiperJet pilots will have the ability to reach out and touch real-time information. Gone will be the days of looking for cursors and cryptic confusing menus that lead to heavy pilot workloads," he says.

Becker adds that the G3000 will complement the PiperJet's luxurious interior and the advanced manufacturing techniques that Piper has pioneered. The G3000 features the GTC 570 vehicle management system, a 5.7in (145mm) diagonal touchscreen, synthetic vision technology and an autopilot coupled with WAAS.

The six-seat PiperJet is designed to reach a cruise speed of 360kt (665km/h) with a range of 1,300nm (2,400km). The proof-of-concept aircraft, which is on static display at NBAA for the first time, has so far logged 230h over 160 flights. Piper has over 200 orders for its first jet, but has not yet committed to an in-service date.