Business & GA

5 EBACE 2017 Aircraft Technology Updates

By Woodrow Bellamy III | May 23, 2017

Challenger 604 Pro Line Fusion upgrade. Photo: Rockwell Collins.

Challenger 604 Pro Line Fusion upgrade. Photo courtesy of Rockwell Collins

After two days of the 2017 European Business Aviation Conference and Exhibition (EBACE), there have been some major new business jet avionics and in-flight connectivity upgrade programs, partnerships and other announcements. Here is a roundup of some of the biggest avionics and in-flight connectivity news items from EBACE.

Pro Line Fusion for Challenger 604

Bombardier’s Challenger 604 business jet operators have a new option for cockpit avionics upgrades, the Pro Line Fusion from Rockwell Collins. Cleveland, Ohio-based Nextant Aerospace will serve as the installation design certification company for the Challenger 604 upgrades.

Operators that upgrade with the new equipment will be replacing the aircraft’s factory-installed CRT displays with three 14.1-inch widescreen displays featuring advanced graphics, configurable windows and touchscreen interfaces. Additionally, the upgrade provides ADS-B mandate compliance, SBAS-capable GNSS, localizer performance with vertical guidance (LPV) approaches, radius-to-fix legs and synthetic vision among other capabilities.

Jay Heublein, executive VP for Nextant Aerospace says the new 604 cockpit package can be acquired by Challenger 604 operators for $599,950 for the standard version of the upgrade.

“We have been evaluating opportunities in the large cabin market for the past 3 years,” said Heublein. “The legacy cockpit is in need of modernization and combined with the pending 2020 regulatory requirements, this aircraft an ideal choice for this program and the timing is perfect.”

SBAS Upgrade Calculator, Funding Guidance

Universal Avionics is looking to EBACE to show European business jet operators how many flight hours, fuel and engine reserves they can save with LPV capability on their aircraft by upgrading to a SBAS-capable flight management system (FMS). The avionics manufacturer introduced its new LPV calculator at EBACE, which determines such data. The calculator requires operators to input their FMS type, destination airport, average fuel cost and stage length.

Additionally, the company is providing guidance on how European operators can take advantage of available 2017 CEF that the European Union is providing for operators that equip with technology that allows them to fly European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) approaches at European airports. According to Universal, there are currently 440 EGNOS-based approaches that are operational at 220 airports — a number that continues to grow.

Dassault, Embraer Cabins Get New Connectivity Options

Honeywell’s JetWave satellite communications hardware will soon have availability for Dassault Falcon Jet and Embraer Lineage 1000E operators.

According to Honeywell, JetWave, which serves as the onboard hardware needed to enable aircraft connectivity via Inmarsat’s JetConnex service, was selected by Embraer as an upgrade for its existing Lineage 1000E executive jet airframe. Initial certification for JetWave on the 1000E is expected by the beginning of 2018.

Additionally, JetWave is now also available as an installation option for new new Falcon 900LX, Falcon 7X, Falcon 8X, Falcon 5X business jets, with initial delivery scheduled to begin in mid-2017.

Air Alsie Chooses Satcom Direct

Air Alsie, an aircraft charter, air ambulance operator and aircraft management company with headquarters in Denmark, has signed a new agreement to acquire voice and data services provided by Satcom Direct.

The arrangement will initially see Satcom providing voice and data services, as well as flight deck communication functionality to the fleet. In addition, the contract names the company as the provider for Air Alsie’s future planned connectivity solutions, including Inmarsat’s Ka-band Jet Connex. The company will also support a cabin router upgrade program for the fleet’s Falcon aircraft, featuring the Satcom Direct Router, which enables increased functionality and control of cabin Wi-Fi networks. The Satcom hardware solution facilitates the use of value-added services, including GlobalVT, which allows end users to make and receive texts and calls on their own smart device, anywhere in the world.

Air Alsie is one of the largest executive fleet operators in Europe, with a fleet that includes Hawker, Citation, two ATR72-500 types, Gulfstream and a fleet of 14 Dassault Falcon aircraft, eight of which are Falcon 7Xs — making them the largest Dassault Falcon operator in Europe.

Pratt & Whitney Canada Launches New Engine Health Tech

Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) officially launched its new oil analysis technology at EBACE 2017. The oil analysis solution is designed to provide an innovative oil system prognostic capability, also playing a role in the company’s proactive help desk, which is also being launched at EBACE starting with the PW300 engine family.

According to P&WC, Oil Analysis Solution will enable P&WC to identify potential maintenance events at an early stage so they can be addressed proactively or avoided entirely. Customers will receive personalized reports and maintenance recommendations based on oil sample findings, enabling optimized shop-visit planning.

To date, nearly 4,000 oil samples have been received across all engine families. The Canadian engine manufacturer said trials are continuing on other engine models, and it plans on adding new capabilities to the solution as their knowledge base of operational improvements that can result from the use of the technology continues to grow.

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