Armed with a supplemental type certificate (STC) covering more than 600 models of general aviation aircraft, Chelton Flight Systems is stepping up efforts to sell its FlightLogic synthetic-vision electronic flight instrument system (EFIS). The company already has a contract for 200 shipsets to equip aircraft in south-east Alaska under Phase II of the US Federal Aviation Administration's Capstone programme.

Chelton's FlightLogic system is the first EFIS incorporating "highway-in-the-sky" flight guidance to be certificated by the FAA. "Our STC covers aircraft ranging from the Piper Cub to the Beech King Air 350," says president Gordon Pratt. The company expects its first helicopter approval by the end May. As with the fixed-wing certification, the STC will cover an approved list of multiple helicopter models. Also this year, Chelton expects approval in light business jets including the Cessna Citation I/II.

The FlightLogic system includes flat-panel primary flight and navigation displays; Shadin digital air-data computer; Crossbow solid-state attitude and heading reference system; and Free Flight Systems wide-area augmentation system-compatible GPS receiver. It includes a terrain database for the synthetic-vision primary flight display and the built-in terrain awareness warning system (TAWS). "We provide a Class A/B/C fixed-wing TAWS and Class A/B helicopter TAWS," says Pratt.

The basic two-display FlightLogic EFIS sells for $71,000, increasing to $75,000 after 1 July. Boise, Idaho-based Chelton is offering a Class BTAWS free with the first 300 systems, after which it becomes a $10,000 option. This incentive is intended to appeal to retrofit customers who have to meet the FAA's TAWS mandate, which requires that all turbine-powered aircraft with six or more seats be equipped with at least a Class B system by the end of March 2005.

Chelton's multi-model STC was obtained after full flight-testing of the FlightLogic EFIS in a Cessna 172 piston single, 421 piston twin and twin-turboprop King Air. Pratt says the FAA's small aircraft directorate has allowed the STC to cover more than 600 aircraft types because it wants to accelerate the introduction of synthetic vision as it improves situation awareness and safety. The EFIS combines headup display-type symbology with three-dimensional terrain, conformal runways and traffic, and highway-in-the-sky boxes providing flightpath guidance based on the built-in flight management system.

Source: Flight International