Albuquerque-based Aspen Avionics (www.aspenavionics.com) is a creative company that works with the general-aviation industry to make better tech products at more affordable prices. The company's Connected Panel system, which allows iPads to load flight plans, tune radios, record flight data and more, runs on an open system. Through this system and partnerships with a number of aviation technology companies, Aspen's initiatives foster creativity and help the industry as a whole.
This week, Aspen Avionics and Avidyne Corporation (www.avidyne.com) announced that Avidyne received FAA STC approval for installation of the Avidyne DFC90 Digital Autopilot into Cessna 182-series aircraft when interfaced with Aspen's Evolution 1000 Pro PFD. The approval includes 16 models of the Cessna 182 Skylane series, all of which are included on Aspen's approved model list. This is the first in a series of DFC90 certifications in aircraft with the Aspen PFD. Follow-on certifications are expected to include the Beechcraft Bonanza and Baron series. The Evolution Integration Kit for the DFC90 kit is a software upgrade to the Evolution Pro PFD. The kit is priced at $1,995 and can be purchased via any Aspen authorized dealer.
"There are significant improvements to be gained by updating older aircraft with modern instrumentation and flight-control systems, and Avidyne and Aspen are working closely to bring our safety- and performance-enhancing technology to more and more aircraft," said Dan Schwinn, Avidyne CEO. "Cessna 182s have continued to hold their value, and aircraft owners investing in the DFC90 and Aspen Pro PFD will be able to extend the useful life of their aircraft while making their flying safer and more enjoyable."
The DFC90 was designed as a plug-and-play replacement for existing STEC55X autopilot systems and adds safety benefits including Airspeed Hold, Envelope Protection and one-button Straight & Level capability. The Evolution Integration Kit for the DFC90 enables the PFD to provide precision attitude inputs to the autopilot from its solid-state ADAHRS, as well as display mode annunciations and alerts on the PFD. Additional capabilities include allowing pilots to perform Heading Select, Altitude Preselect and Vertical Speed Select inputs to the DFC90 directly from the Evolution Pro PFD.
"The combined safety-enhancing features of the DFC90 and the Aspen glass panel, at this affordable price, make for an unbeatable retrofit solution," said Aspen Vice President of Marketing Brad Hayden. "This ground-breaking co-development effort with Avidyne is further proof of Aspen's commitment to be compatible with new as well as existing systems and to continually improve our product lines with easy-to-install software upgrades."
Additionally, Aspen is offering rebate packages for Evolution displays and add-ons. Visit www.aspenavionics.com/rebate for full details.