November 6, 2008
For the past half decade, as aviation weather datalinked to the cockpit has become standard equipment for U.S. pilots, European pilots could only look on in envy. At AOPA in San Jose this week, Avidyne Corp. announced that weather envy is no more, with the introduction of what it calls its Entegra WX Series. This new product combines four weather-sensor choices -- datalinked weather via Sirius Satellite Radio, narrowcast on-demand datalink through the Iridium low-earth-altitude satellite system, onboard lightning detection with Avidyne's TWX670 system and, last, an onboard weather radar system. Obviously, this is a complex system, requiring two datalink receivers -- the MLX770 receiver handles Iridium data, and the MLB700 does Sirius duty. Currently, display options are Avidyne's latest versions of its popular EX500 and EX5000 MFD products. Eventually, display options may be expanded to include portables and EFBs.
Since Iridium coverage is essentially worldwide, although radar and other weather availability vary by country, WSI provides the weather products for the system.
For more information on the Entegra Weather Series, check out this podcast with Avidyne's Dan Schwinn, and for information on prices and specs, see Avidyne.com.