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  • Garmin G1000 for CitationJet
    Posted by Fred George 5:17 PM on May 28, 2010


    Climb aboard a CitationJet that has been retrofitted with Garmin G1000 avionics, as we did on Thursday, May May 27 with Garmin test pilot Steve Reid, and you'll quickly discover that it has leapfrogged the current CJ1+ with respect to situational awareness and reduced pilot workload. Full-screen synthetic vision on the PFD is one the main reasons. It's currently available for the G1000 retrofit, but it has yet to be offered on the Collins Pro Line 21 package that's installed on CJ1 aircraft S/N 360 and later -- or any other CJ for the matter.

    blog post photo
    photo:  Fred George - PFD image of Runway 33 at Lawrence, KS.

    Take a close look at this shot. This is the view I had on the PFD just after rolling past the numbers on Runway 33 at Lawrence, KS prior to beginning the takeoff run. Garmin takes full advantage of screen real estate with its SVS system. It uses an edge-to-edge attitude indicator background with translucent windows for the air data tapes. You can almost feel the texture of the gravel in the asphalt and smell the grass along the edges of the pavement.

    blog post photo
    Photo:  Fred George

    The package also includes Garmin's SmartTaxi function that shows your aircraft's position in relation to the airport diagram, making it almost impossible to get lost or take the wrong route between the runway and the ramp. In this shot, you can see the CJ pointed due south, on Taxiway C just outside of Garmin's hangar at KIXD New Century Airport [Johnson County - Industrial to us seniors].


    blog post photo
    photo:  Fred George

    The large screens also make possible a painless reversion mode, in case of display failure. The engine instruments and fuel gauges are displayed on the left side of the PFD without hogging a lot of screen area.

    Another handy tool:  The original CitationJet's Williams FJ44-1A engines lacked FADECs, so pilots had to be careful to look up the appropriate takeoff, climb and cruise thrust numbers. G1000 for CitationJet, in contrast, has an N1 computer that automatically bugs the N1 tapes with the appropriate fan rpm target setting. All you have to do is plug in the OAT from ATIS or AWOS, the target bugs pop up on the N1 indicator.

    Push up the thrust levers until indicated N1 rpm meets the target bugs and you're well on your way to achieving published AFM runway performance.

    blog post photo
    photo:  Fred George

    No wonder that I'm smiling. But, G1000's capabilities on the ground are minor compared to what it can provide in the air. The original Honeywell SPZ-5000 / CNI-5000 / KLN-900 package was a 2D flight guidance system, albeit one with limited navigation capabilities. The G1000, in contrast, provides 3D navigation in virtually phases of flight from takeoff to touchdown. For example, it hosts all Arinc 424 procedure types, so it guide you through the most convoluted heading / crossing altitude / course / arc / procedure turn maneuvers, including entry to / exit from holding patterns.


    blog post photo
    Photo: Fred George

    3D guidance obviously is provided for ILS approaches, such as this ILS Runway 33 at Lawrence, KS . . .


    blog post photo
    Photo:  Fred George

    It also provides 3D guidance for non-precision and WAAS LPV approaches, such as this RNAV (GPS) RWY 36 to New Century airport. Notably, we experienced significant ILS glideslope scalloping at LWC, causing the aircraft to porpoise mildly during a coupled approach. During the WAAS LPV [RNAV (GPS) RWY 36] coupled approach, the aircraft seemed to be on SwissRail, as it was so smooth and precise.

    blog post photo
    crooked photo:  Fred George

    Aircraft position is portrayed on optional Jeppesen approach charts, assuming they're geo-referenced. The G1000 CJ won't be certified as paperless because it has a single file server. But, if you also carry a stand-alone EFB with electronic charts, you should be able to earn paperless certification -- except for enroute charts.

    blog post photo
    Photo:  Fred George

    Take a look at the vintage 1990 SPZ-5000 avionics. It not only had a fraction of G1000's capabilities, it also weighed 100 lb more. The weight savings of G1000 is an important consideration. The original 359 CitationJets had 10,400 lb MTOWs, so tanks-full payload was very limited. G1000's 100 lb net weight savings thus is a significant improvement.

    And  . . .


    blog post photo
    photo:  Fred George

    Remember those trouble-prone Ametek vertical tape gauges? They're gone, replaced by engine instrument system indications on the MFD. Cessna and Garmin, though, elected to retain the original annunciator panel at the bottom of the glareshield rather than upgrading to a CAS messaging system.

    What's not to like about G1000? While I love the flight path marker that indicates aircraft trajectory, the flight directopr is attitude based, rather than trajectory based. And, while there is a flight level change mode, there is no stand-alone speed select knob to set a speed bug on the airspeed tape.

    The $385,000 package will be certified by mid year and it installations will be performed by Cessna Service centers. Garmin officials believe they'll capture ten percent of the available fleet. Based on what I saw during our 1.1 hour demo flight, I'll wager that's a very conservative estimate.

    We'll have much more to say about the G1000 retrofit package for the CitationJet in an upcoming issue of B&CA.

    Tags: ba99 G1000 citationjet cessna garmin

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