CJP 2022: Platinum Partners Update CJP Members on Latest Developments
In addition to updates from Textron Aviation, Day Two at CJP 2022 also included the chance for CJP’s Platinum Partners to share information about their companies and updates relevant to Citation pilots. Here’s a recap of those presentations.
Phil Straub (above), executive vice president and managing director for aviation at Garmin, led off the discussion by highlighting the 25,000th Garmin flight deck installation, a feat the company achieved earlier this year.
That accomplishment dates back to 2004 and the first approval of the G1000 in the Cessna 172/182/206 piston singles. “Ron [Draper], thank you from the bottom of my heart,” he added. “[Textron Aviation] represents about 40% of that. It’s a great partnership.”
The company is now working to wrap up certification for its G600/GFC 600 autopilot upgrade program for the CJ2 and eventually the CJ1, first announced at last year’s CJP Convention. “I know there’s [also] a lot of interest in [upgrades for] the 560 series as well as the 550, and we’ve got some thoughts as well about those,” he hinted.
Garmin is also working on VNAV display improvements, database updates and access to government flight charts for various countries, as well as a potential 3-D auto [display] mode for its recently-introduced GWX 75 weather radar.
Mike Croitoru, manager of business development, owner groups at FlightSafety, detailed a recent reshuffling of its simulator options for Citation Mustang and CJ3/4 jets, along with pending installation of a GTN 750 in the company’s CJ1 simulator in San Antonio, TX.
While the company has phased out its Mustang simulator in Orlando, FL (“it was getting old and it would have been a lot of money to upgrade”) FSI is upgrading other devices, including “a 4.8 in Tampa, and eventually in Wichita as well.”
FSI is also refining its online ground school (OGS) programs that offer pilots the opportunity to perform some training in advance of traveling onsite. Croitoru noted that all CJP members, regardless of whether or not they train at FSI, will also be able to download three courses from their general library beginning next year. More details by FSI will be listed on the CJP Member Benefits page.
Croitoru also spoke of FSI’s new partnership with GE Digital. “Look at the amount of data that they’re collecting from airplanes,” he noted. “We’re now able to get that data and start looking at how to customize our training.”
More than 7,000 Citation aircraft are flying with its Pro Line 4 and Pro Line 21 flight decks, and Steve Adolphs, senior director for business and regional avionics, aftermarket & cabin programs for Collins Aerospace, emphasized the company intends to keep it that way.
“We’ve worked very closely with our aftermarket team on how we can keep bringing solutions to the field of aircraft with Collins equipment on board,” he said. “Our goal is to keep those aircraft flying and to keep bringing additive solutions to them.
“And just to dispel some rumors, Pro Line 21 is not dead,” Adolphs emphasized. “We hear a lot of rumors going around about that, [but] since 2021 we’ve invested in over 20 STCs just for Textron aircraft with upgrades to those solutions,” including CPDLC (controller pilot data link communications) and Sirius XM.
Adolphs also noted Collins is “very focused” on developing solutions to mitigate interference to its radar altimeters from 5G wireless signals. “We’re watching this very closely to make sure we’re putting solutions on the shelf to keep you flying and keep you going into those airports you need to go into,” he added.
Sandpoint, ID-based Tamarack Aerospace has bounded back from difficulties over the past few years, thanks in no small part to continued support and accolades from many CJP members who have equipped their Citations with the company’s load-alleviating ATLAS winglets.
Company President Jacob Klinginsmith noted Tamarack is approaching having 10 percent of the C525A and C525B fleet flying with its winglets. Installations may be performed at three locations – Sandpoint; Aiken, SC; and Oxford, England – with more than 20 service centers worldwide for maintenance and inspections.
While Citations are the core part of its business, Tamarack founder Nick Guida noted the company continues to install winglets on King Air 350 and 200 aircraft performing ISR (intelligence, surveillance & reconnaissance) operations.
“I just set a world record in the King Air 350, flying from Geiger, ID to Orlando, FL in seven hours and 47 minutes,” he said. “That was pretty cool, but it’s also a long time [in the air]. Imagine what it [means] for endurance.”
All photos by Stratton DV Imaging unless otherwise noted.