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Avidyne DFC90 Autopilot Certification

C182 marks first certification of interface between Avidyne’s DFC90 autopilot and Aspen’s EFD1000 Pro PFD; DFC90 provides Envelope Protection, full-time Envelope Alerting, and Straight & Level capability; Aspen EFD1000 provides greater precision and higher reliability of solid-state PFD plus Synthetic Vision.

Lincoln, MA. – October 2, 2012-Avidyne Corporation, a leading provider of integrated flight deck and safety systems for general aviation aircraft, announced today they have received a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the installation of their DFC90 Digital Autopilot in Cessna 182-series aircraft when interfaced with the Evolution Pro Primary Flight Display (PFD) from Aspen Avionics of Albuquerque. 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. 
This initial STC covers the DFC90 autopilot as a plug-and-play retrofit of existing STEC55X systems in 16 models of the Cessna 182 Skylane Series including the 182E, 182F, 182G, 182H, 182J, 182K, 182L, 182M, 182N, R182N, 182P, 182Q, 182R, 182S, 182T, and the R182.  Over 20,000 of these specific models of aircraft were built between the years 1961-1985 and 1997-2012.  STEC30/50/60-2/65 series autopilots may also be replaced by a DFC90 under this STC.  Aspen holds an Approved Model List Supplemental Type Certificate (AML-STC) for their Evolution Pro PFD on a wide range of aircraft including all 16 of these C182 models.

“The single-pilot IFR mission profile of the typical Cessna 182 makes it a great platform to launch the DFC90-plus-Aspen Pro offering,” said Patrick Herguth, Avidyne’s Chief Operating Officer.   “The addition of Envelope Protection and full-time Envelope Alerting, the Straight and Level button, and Synthetic Vision make the DFC90 and Aspen Pro PFD an excellent combination for C182 owners looking to enhance the safety, the utility, and the value of their aircraft.”

  “Aspen and Avidyne share a common goal to make flying safer and more enjoyable, especially for single-pilot IFR,” says Aspen President and CEO John Uczekaj. “The integrated solution that we’ve co-developed embodies this goal and gives owners and operators a whole new level of performance and reliability from their aircraft. We are pleased to offer yet another option for our customers to extend the life of their aircraft’s panel.”
  “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’s President and CEO.  “Cessna182s 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 adds significant performance and safety benefits including Airspeed Hold (IAS), Envelope Protection (EP™), and full-time Envelope Alerting (EA™),  as well as one-button Straight & Level capability. The DFC90 was designed as a plug-and-play replacement for existing STEC55X autopilot systems. The DFC90 can use the existing 55X mounting tray, servos and much of the wiring, which dramatically reduces installation costs.  While not fully plug and play, STEC30/50/60-2/65 series autopilots may also be replaced by a DFC90 under this STC, making use of existing STEC servos and brackets. Avidyne has also announced plans to certify their own ASA575 servos, which will be available in 2013, allowing C182s (and other aircraft) without existing STEC autopilots to also be upgraded with the DFC90.
The Aspen Pro PFD provides attitude inputs to the DFC90 from its integrated Air Data and Attitude/Heading Reference Sensor (ADAHRS), while presenting the pilot with autopilot Mode Annunciations and Alerts right on the primary flight instrument. In addition to pitch and roll inputs, the Aspen Pro PFD also provides Heading Select, Altitude Preselect, Indicated Airspeed Select, and Vertical Speed Select inputs to the DFC90.  The Aspen Pro PFD also has an optional Synthetic Vision feature for added situational awareness and safety.
Pricing and Availability
Pricing for the DFC90 autopilot starts at $9,995 plus installation for single-engine piston aircraft. Pricing assumes the aircraft has compatible STEC autopilot servos installed.
In addition to the C182 series, the DFC90 is currently certified in Cirrus SR20/ SR22 and Piper PA-46 Matrix and Mirage aircraft equipped with Avidyne’s Entegra displays.  Avidyne’s DFC100 autopilot is certified for Cirrus SR20/22 and Matrix equipped with Entegra Release 9.  
Pricing for the DFC90 for twin and turbine aircraft will start at $14,995.
Aspen Evolution Pro PFDs are priced starting at $10,180 plus installation.  The software unlock for integrating the DFC90 is priced at $1,995, labor not included, and requires v2.6 software or later.  Aspen currently holds an Approved Model List Supplemental Type Certificate (AML-STC) for their Evolution Pro PFD on a wide range of aircraft.  
About Aspen Avionics, Inc. (www.aspenavionics.com)
Aspen Avionics specializes in bringing the most advanced technology and capability into general aviation and helicopter cockpits—and budgets. Our products increase situational awareness and reduce pilot workload, making it easier and safer to fly in both VFR and IFR conditions. The way we look at it, getting the latest avionics technology shouldn’t always mean spending a lot of money—on equipment or installation. At Aspen Avionics, we design products to be affordable, easy to install, and easy to own.
About Avidyne Corporation (www.avidyne.com)
Avidyne’s continuing leadership in innovation and its Flying Made Simple™ system design make flying safer, more accessible and more enjoyable for pilots and their passengers. The company offers a full line of panel-mounted avionics including their new IFD540 and IFD440 FMS/GPS/NAV/COM, AMX240 audio panel, AXP340 Mode S Transponder, and DFC90 digital flight control systems.  Avidyne’s product line also includes the industry-leading EntegraRelease 9 integrated flight deck with DFC100 digital flight control system, datalink-capable EX600 multi-function displays, the dual-antenna TAS600 series of active traffic advisory systems with ADS-B, the MLB700 broadcast datalink receiver, the MLX770 world-wide datalink transceiver, and the TWX670 Tactical Weather Detection system. Headquartered in Lincoln, MA, the company has facilities in Columbus, OH, Melbourne, FL, and Boulder, CO.