Avidyne autopilot approved for Bonanzas

Avidyne Corporation has received a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the FAA for the installation of its DFC90 Digital Autopilot in Beechcraft Bonanza series aircraft when interfaced with the Evolution Pro Primary Flight Display (EFD1000 PFD) from Aspen Avionics.

Avidyne previously certified the DFC90 with the Entegra PFD in the Cirrus SR20 and SR22 and with the Aspen PFD in Cessna 182 Skylane series aircraft. Avidyne also has plans to certify the DFC90 in the Beechcraft Baron series, among others.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis STC covers the DFC90 autopilot as a plug-and-play retrofit of existing STEC55X systems in 25 models of the Beech Bonanza, including the 35-33, 35-A33, 35-B33, 35-C33, 35-C33A, E33, E33A, E33C, F33, F33A, F33C, G33, H35, J35, K35, M35, N25, P35, S35, V35, V35A, V35B, 36, A36 and A36TC. More than 17,000 of these specific models of aircraft have been produced from 1946 to the present.

The DFC90 uses the existing servos of the STEC55X autopilot that it replaces. 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 its Evolution Pro PFD on a wide range of aircraft, including these Bonanza models.

“The Bonanza has a great heritage and their owners represent a large percentage of active general aviation pilots,” said Patrick Herguth, Avidyne’s Chief Operating Officer. “We have seen a considerable amount of interest in the DFC90 from Bonanza owners who are looking to enhance performance and safety. With this STC, Envelope Protection, full-time Envelope Alerting, the Straight and Level button are now available to them with the DFC90, as well as Synthetic Vision with the Aspen Pro PFD.”

The DFC90 is an attitude-based, digital retrofit autopilot system that adds  performance and safety benefits, including Airspeed Hold (IAS), Envelope Protection (EP) and full-time Envelope Alerting (EA), which prevent stalls and overspeeds, and provides monitoring and alerting when the autopilot is off. The Straight & Level capability provides one-button recovery from unusual attitudes.

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 for the DFC90 autopilot starts at $9,995 plus installation for single-engine piston aircraft. Pricing assumes the aircraft currently has compatible STEC autopilot servos installed, company officials note.

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. Pricing does not include the cost of shipping, VAT, other parts or dealer labor.

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