Plane & Pilot
Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Aspen Avionics EFD1000 VFR PFD

Aspen launches IFR capability for VFR pilots

Since the introduction of glass technology, the main advantages of switching to it have been increased situational awareness and higher reliability. Traditional rounddial instruments are filled with intricate mechanisms, whirling gyroscopes, tiny air bladders, mechanical links, gears, dials and an assortment of small, vulnerable parts that wear out with time. Glass technology replaces all that with "solid-state" components that rely on sophisticated,nonmoving sensors to provide the same information to the pilot. Second, glass displays combine multiple pieces of information (such as airspeed, vertical speed, attitude and altitude) into a single visual area, placing thedata close together and making the pilot's visual scan more efficient. Combined with GPS technology, glass PFDs give the pilot more information in a more efficient display and with greater accuracy.

Aspen's VFR PFD consolidates all the traditional "six-pack" instrument information—plus a course deviation indicator (CDI)—into a single display. It does much more, including displaying winds aloft, OAT, TAS and ground speed. The unit interfaces with all popular panelmounted GPS units, and its navigation display features a 360-degree compass and ARC modes. The display has a flight plan overlay, including flight plan legs and waypoints, curved flight paths and nearby navaids. The unit shares the Evolution series' Hazard Awareness feature, providing lightning and traffic hazard displays.

On the technical side, the VFR PFD has its own integral Air Data Attitude Heading Reference System (ADAHRS), so no additional units need to be installed into the airplane, saving weight over non-modular glass-panel systems. The unit includes a built-in backup battery and emergency GPS, and has an analog converter unit (ACU) that connects to some existing autopilots for GPS steering. Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADSB) is built into the PFD, as well.

To date, the VFR PFD is the most affordable, upgradable and easily installed Electronic Flight Instrument System (EFIS) available for the GA market. At seven inches high and three-anda-half inches wide, it packs a ton of information into a small space. With an affordable price tag, laughably simple installation and a wealth of information available on its crispcolor display, The Aspen VFR PFD is an enticing lure for VFR pilots to finally take advantage of what IFR pilots have been raving about for years. Contact


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