Avidyne DFC90 Certified For Bonanzas
Avidyne Corporation announced the STC certification of the DFC90 plug-and-play retrofit autopilot system for Beechcraft Bonanza applications. The STC, which covers 25 models of the Bonanza, allows the DFC90 to replace existing S-TEC autopilots when interfaced with the Aspen Evolution Pro Primary Flight Display (EFD1000Pro). Avidyne previously certified the drop-in DFC90 with the Aspen PFD in Cessna 182 Skylane series aircraft and with the Entegra PFD in the Cirrus SR20 and SR22. It's also certified in the Piper PA-46 Matrix and Mirage.
The DFC90 digital autopilot can make for an easy retrofit, since it's designed to drive the existing S-TEC autopilot servos. It also steps the interface up to an attitude-based design, using the Aspen AHARS for a digital roll and pitch reference. The Aspen PFD provides heading command, altitude preselect, indicated airspeed select and vertical speed select inputs to the DFC90. It also displays autopilot mode annunciations and alerts on the Aspen display. "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, plus the Straight and Level button are now available to them with the DFC90, as well as Synthetic Vision with the Aspen Pro PFD," said Patrick Herguth, Avidyne's Chief Operating Officer.
The DFC90 can use the existing S-TEC 55X mounting tray, servos and much of the interface wiring. When interfaced with other S-TEC models, including the popular 30/50/60-2-series, the existing servos and bracketry are utilized. Pricing for the DFC90 autopilot starts at $9,995 plus installation. The software unlock for integrating the DFC90 to the Aspen PFD is priced at $1,995. The industry is still waiting for the previously announced Avidyne IFD540 and IFD440-series drop-in replacement navigators. These are the plug-and-play hybrid navigators designed for replacing existing Garmin GNS530 and 430 units. Avidyne's Tom Harper told AVweb that the units could be available later this year.