...Satellite Wx, Better Than Shock Jocks...

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While Howard Stern's jump to a satellite station (provided by Sirius Radio) got all the media hype last week, over in Duluth, Minn., the aviation world got its own boost into the satellite age via XM Radio. Cirrus Design announced on Thursday that its satellite datalink weather option is now a reality. Dr. Robert Segal of Las Cruces, N.M., became the first customer to take delivery of fully integrated satellite datalink weather in a Cirrus SR22-G2. The recently certified XM weather datalink is a $7,490 factory-installed option, and users can subscribe to receive real-time information services such as NEXRAD, METARs, SIGMETs, AIRMETs, TFRs and lightning updates. The data feeds into the Avidyne multifunction display. Cirrus CEO Alan Klapmeier said in a news release, "Real-time in-cockpit weather provides reliable weather information to aid the pilot in the decision-making process -- particularly on longer flights. We have always believed that pilots should have access to as much information as possible to improve situational awareness. Real-time weather datalink is a key element that can greatly increase the safety and utility of general aviation." More ways to access more data in the cockpit -- another good new thing.