"Emergency" Icing System Offered

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Piper Saratogas and fixed gear 6X series aircraft are now being offered with an emergency deicing system for use in unforecast icing conditions. The Piper Inadvertent Icing Protection System (PIIPS) is not certified for known icing but it could be an added measure of safety for pilots who get into unexpected icing problems. The TKS weeping wing system seeps a glycol solution over the leading edge of the wings, horizontal stabilizer and prop to remove small amounts of ice and prevent further buildup while the pilot retreats from the icing conditions. The system costs $28,000. Piper also announced that its flagship Meridian will join the rest of the fleet in offering the Avidyne Entegra glass panel as an option. The Meridian version will have three screens, one primary flight display each for the pilot and co-pilot and a multifunction display. The two systems will cross reference each other to ensure consistency and accuracy. Meanwhile, Piper CEO Chuck Suma told reporters that things are almost back to normal at the Vero Beach plant after cleanup from four hurricanes last fall. There are now 920 employees working and full production is expected in May or June.