The AV-30 will initially be available to the experimental market in early 2019. The same unit will be submitted for certification via the AMOC AML-STC process. This is the new risk-based certification methodology that is being supported for Part 23 Class I and Class II aircraft.
We are hoping for mid to late next year (2019) for approval for the stand-alone (non-autopilot) configuration. If you autopilot utilizes the attitude indicator for roll and pitch, it must remain in the aircraft (for now).
If you would like to have your aircraft added for AML evaluation, please fill out the contact form and provide Make / Model. Also, if you have an autopilot that interfaces to your DG, please let us know which model AP you have.
We will provide progress reports via the subscription list, so sign up for that too if interested. See the Contacts page.
The philosophy for the AV-30 (when configured as a DG) is to replace the vacuum driven DG with an electrical equivalent. It was not initially intended to replace an HSI, which is an integral part of a flight control system and has multiple interface requirements.
The AV-30, when installed as a stand-alone display, will not interface to the autopilot.
However, based on feedback, we have designed the APA-10 Autopilot Adapter to address the wide variety of autopilots found in legacy aircraft. The APA-10 will provide roll, pitch, heading datum, course datum and flight director to/from the autopilot.
We have also incorporated dual ARINC receivers, which will allow the AV-30 to communicate to a digital radio (Garmin 4XX/5XX Series, or compatible). This will allow full traditional HSI functionality down the road.
Autopilot integration will be provided after the initial stand-alone certification effort.
The AV-30 provides an RS-232 receive line for "Aviation" or "Moving Map" output provided by virtually every panel mount navigator in service. This data is broadcast by the GPS Navigator and no data is sent from the AV-30 back to the GPS unit.
Therefore, the AV-30 operates as a repeater display, moving basic GPS navigation data into the primary field of view. The data provided includes current waypoint ID, distance to destination, ground speed, cross track error, desired track and bearing to waypoint.
This data can be overlayed in the textual fields as desired, and is also used to create the compass rose (GPS Track), moving map display (ARC Mode), and create the GPS HSI presentation when the AV-30 is operating as a DG instrument.
(Don't confuse the GPS HSI presentation will a full-blown HSI equivalent - See other questions in this FAQ)
We also plan on supporting hand-held units, which use the NMEA protocol, but this may be incorporated into a future software release.
We are also looking at GPSS capability, again available as an update after initial product certification. The GPSS capability utilizes the GPS data to automatically set the heading bug for more sophisticated course-intercept capabilities, smoothing transitions between flight plan legs.
** We believe that all Garmin series, Apollos & KLN94's all have this Moving Map output - check your IM if you are not sure!
By default, the AV-30 is a non-slaved DG. The good news is that this reduces installation complexity dramatically (no GPS antennas required, no remote mount magnetometers, no delicate field mapping, no tedious calibration procedures).
Power and ground are the only required connections when the unit is installed as a DG - This is our "Instrument Swap" philosophy.
The bad news is that it operates the same as a non-slaved DG. On power up, a minor heading adjustment will be required. (It does save the last known heading on power-down). During flight, it will require minor corrections - We are seeing about 5 degrees of error for every half-hour of operation. This is a single knob push, turn to adjust, push to accept.
When interfaced to a GPS Navigator the DG can optionally operate in Track mode and no corrections will be required. For day to day operations, GPS track mode is generally preferred over heading.
Occasionally when actual magnetic heading is required (ATC clearances in large cross-wind environments), the non-slaved DG is available, or simply use your wet compass for those operations.
For initial certification purposes, we are leveraging what is called the risk-based certification methodology (aka AMOC). The FAA is greatly reducing the software certification requirements (DO-178), with the thinking that it's better to get the vacuum driven instruments out of these older aircraft sooner rather than later. The MTBF between the AI, DG and pump is somewhere around 300 hours.
A subtlety to this approval method is that they are requiring that the legacy airspeed, altimeter, turn rate (or equ), and VSI remain in place. The AML-STC will gate how and where the instrument can be installed, and we expect it to be limited to legacy six-pack configurations.
When discussing replacing backup instruments in an EFIS equipped aircraft, this gets into how that specific system was certified, and issues such as HIRF and Lightning protection start to get bounced around.
There is new policy from the FAA regarding relaxation of HIRF and Lightning on small aircraft, so that may change the dynamic going forward - or not.
During the AV-30 cert process, we will certainly broach the subject of replacing EFIS backup instruments with the FAA to see what the current thinking is.