Sandel Avionics, the California-based avionics supplier, says certification and installation of its ST3400 terrain awareness and warning system (TAWS) is rapidly expanding, with installation under way on over 20 aircraft types.

Sandel says growth is continuing despite the uncertainty posed by its legal dispute with Honeywell over alleged patent infringements. The company is one of four avionics manufacturers facing legal action over the technology resident in TAWS, which Honeywell developed in the 1990s as the enhanced ground proximity warning system (EGPWS). Despite the legal claims (Flight International, 17-23 September), Sandel president Gerry Block says pressure to meet the US Federal Aviation Administration- mandated March 2005 deadline will ensure all systems are in demand. "Everyone gets to sell, and all the people we are talking to are still placing orders," he says.

Sandel, which received FAA certification of its TAWS earlier this year, is supporting installation and certification on almost 70 aircraft and 20 types. The latest supplemental type certificate (STC) for the ST3400 installation has been awarded to Calgary-based Rocky Mountain Aircraft, which is fitting it to 17 de Havilland Twin Otters. Sandel says the ST3400 is the only system certified for Class A or B installations: Class A covers Part 121 transport aircraft and Part 135 passenger aircraft with 10 or more seats and Class B covers Part 135 aircraft with six to nine seats, or Part 91 with six or more passenger seats.

The company says it is the only TAWS that has a performance-based predictive altitude display, and a terrain display that does not affect the use of the radar. Sandel also plans to add real-time weather imagery from the first quarter of 2003.

Source: Flight International