Honeywell's Primus matches old with new while anticipating future avionics requirements

The first retrofit applications of Honeywell's Primus Epic integrated avionics are expected to be certificated this week. Primus Epic Control Display System/Retrofit (CDS/R) installations are due to be approved on the Cessna Citation V, Gulfstream II and III, and Lockheed L-100 Hercules.

The CDS/R brings the large flat-panel displays and integrated avionics computers developed for Primus Epic to older business jets and provides growth to accommodate future communication, navigation, surveillance/air traffic management requirements. "There are a series of mandates coming and this system provides growth to 2010 and beyond," says area sales manager Ed Borger. Examples include collision avoidance, terrain awareness, precision navigation and controller-pilot datalink.

The 200mm x 250mm (8in x 10in) liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) provide a large screen area on which to present the additional information. Honeywell recommends a four-screen installation, with primary flight and multifunction displays for each pilot, with three screens where space is limited. The company's Citation V testbed has a three-screen implementation, as have the CDS/R installations in the GII and GIII, where a panel-mounted landing-gear handle prevents the installation of a fourth display. "We are working with Gulfstream to engineer a four-screen installation," Borger says.

Honeywell has schemed four-screen installations for the Bombardier Challenger and Boeing 727. "We are still looking for a Challenger and have not done a 727 yet," says Borger, but both are considered prime candidates for retrofits. Replacing a first-generation electronic flight instrument system with the CDS/R saves weight, he says, with four LCDs replacing five or six cathode ray tubes and the dual integrated computers replacing three processor boxes in earlier systems.

The CDS/R interfaces with existing aircraft sensors and flight control systems. An internal flight management computer is optional, or the system can be interfaced with other flight management systems. Pull-down menus are operated using a joystick on the multifunction display control panel, which can be mounted on thecentre or side console.

Honeywell's Citation V is also equipped with the company's in-flight e-mail system, using its Airsat 1 satellite communications system. Airsat is a single-channel voice-only system using the reactivated Iridium low-Earth-orbit constellation that Honeywell is developing to handle low-speed data. Later this month, the company will begin flight testing a high-speed datasystem using Inmarsat satellites.

Source: Flight International