The Piper M600/SLS became the first aircraft equipped with Garmin’s Autoland system to receive FAA type certification on Monday. In the event of an emergency, Autoland is designed to “control and land the aircraft without human intervention,” taking into account factors such as aircraft performance, terrain, obstacles and weather. In addition, the system, which is capable of activating automatically or via a dedicated button, communicates with air traffic control and provides visual and verbal information for passengers. Autoland activation can be canceled at any time using the autopilot disconnect button.
“The FAA certification of Autoland is a day of celebration for the entire aviation industry as we redefine the expectations of not only the pilot, but more importantly the passenger, and what should be standard equipment on general aviation aircraft,” said Garmin Executive Vice President and Managing Director of Aviation Phil Straub. “Our congratulations to Piper for certifying this safety enhancing technology on the M600 and delivering one of the industry’s most significant innovations to our respective customers.”
According to Piper, deliveries of Autoland-equipped M600s will begin immediately. Garmin expects Autoland to be available for the Cirrus SF50 Vision Jet and Daher TBM 940 shortly with additional aircraft approvals in the works. As previously reported by AVweb, the system was introduced last October.