AvStop Online Magazine    

By Antonio Percy


Duluth, Minn. March 31, 2009, Today Cirrus Aircraft announced the selection of Garmin as its avionics provider for production models of the Vision SF50 personal jet. The current Vision flying test aircraft, V1, will have the Cirrus Perspective by Garmin™ avionics system installed in early April - the same as is currently available on the SR-series of piston aircraft by Cirrus - and continue its rigorous flight test schedule. 

Cirrus Aircraft President and CEO Brent Wouters expressed the importance of the announcement and the milestone it represents. "Avionics are the key component of the pilot-aircraft interface. Cirrus and Garmin are both recognized as leaders in their respective fieldsandshare a common vision to bring innovative technologies and continuous product improvement into the GA cockpit. Today we have taken another significant step forward in both our partnership with each other and with Vision customers by bringing avionics continuity and consistency to Vision and the entire Cirrus Aircraft lineup.


Wouters continued, "The response to Cirrus Perspective by Garmin in our piston aircraft has been extremely positive. With Cirrus Perspective, Garmin and Cirrus worked together to develop the right avionics solution for our customers in a newGarmin system. Our joint development approach was the hallmark of Cirrus Perspective and we'll go down a similar path as we evolve that same platform for the Vision personal jet. This is great news for present and future Vision jet and SR22 Perspective owners because the SR22 and SR22 TURBO with Cirrus Perspective and Known Ice Protection is the natural training and transition aircraft in preparation for flying the Vision." 

“Garmin’s avionics are designed to simplify flying and exceed pilots’ expectations for ease of use and reliability,” said Gary Kelley, Garmin’s Vice President. “From the industry’s most powerful autopilot that optimizes performance over the entire airspeed envelope to Garmin’s synthetic vision technology that has dramatically improved safety of flight by replicating what pilots would see outside the cockpit, the Cirrus Vision avionics suite will feature the leading edge technology customers expect from Garmin.”

Cirrus Aircraft and Garmin have been partners in every Cirrus Aircraft model delivered to date. Garmin GNS430's were standard equipment on the first SR20's produced and remained standard on all SR20 and SR22 models until the introduction of Cirrus Perspective by Garmin in mid-2008. With Cirrus Perspective, Cirrus Aircraft introduced 12" screens, dual AHRS, the "Blue LVL" button, IAS select, Enhanced (Infrared) Vision and many other industry-leading features and functions. Given the future delivery of production Vision aircraft, the current Cirrus Perspective avionics system will naturally evolve to include the latest avionics innovations and developments when delivered on production Vision aircraft.   

The Vision development program continues to make measured progress in many other areas as well. V1 is averaging five flight tests per week through the winter in Duluth and now has completed more than 200 engine run hours and nearly 140 actual flight test hours. Significant flight test milestones near the end of 1Q'09 include finalizing power on and power off stall tests; establishing the full CG range; assessing anti-ice system characteristics; further refining aircraft stability and control for V1; and evaluating wing root vortex generators.

Short-term design evaluation items include wing tip and flap optimization, additional structural materials selection and part trial testing. With the Vision personal jet program now progressing from its R&D phase toward mainstream Cirrus operations, the Vision engineering and flight test team is also transitioning into a corporately integrated development and certification program in Cirrus’ main production facilities on the south side of Duluth International Airport.

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