Looking forward to the not-too-distant day when an iPad or tablet computer might control all of the avionics in the panel, Aspen Avionics said Tuesday that it's CG-100 in-cabin wireless module has gained TSO approval and should be ready for manufacturing and shipping within a few weeks. The $2499 product is a small blind-mounted box that provides an in-cockpit wireless network to connect a tablet computer directly to panel-mount hardware such as Garmin navigators and Aspen's popular Evolution line of aftermarket EFIS products, Aspen's Brad Hayden said in a podcast interview. For now, the system will be capable only of transferring flight plans back and forth between the equipment but going forward, Aspen envisions expanding capability that could provide tablet control of virtually everything in the modern panel.
The CG-100 is actually the first product in a series of products and is called Connected Pilot, and the hardware requires an app called Aspen Flight Connect. The system automatically links up through the CG-100 when the iPad comes into range of its standard wireless prototocol. Further, said Hayden, Connected Pilot will interface with seven of the popular iPad planning apps and as it evolves, the product will provide ever more capability between the iPad and the panel. Hayden told AVweb that the FAA's certification hurtles included proving that the WiFi is secure and requiring a means for the pilot to verify any information before it's sent into the panel equipment. Find out more about Connected Pilot at AspenAvionics.com.