Garmin recently announced that their low-cost, G5 Electronic Flight Instrument will now be available for use in certificated aircraft. It fits directly into a standard 3 1/8 inch hole used for instruments in most aircraft, which reduces installation time and cost. In this Newsmakers episode of the Aviation News Talk podcast, we interview Garmin software engineer Joe Gepner, who helped design the G5.
The Garmin G5 is a direct replacement for a round-gauge attitude indicator, and it was originally introduced for experimental and LSA aircraft in July 2016. Pricing of that version starts at $1199. Later, Garmin introduced a second page in the G5 that displays a HSI, so that it can also be used as a direct replacement for a DG, heading indicator, or HSI. If a pilot has two of these instruments in an aircraft and the one displaying the attitude indicator fails, the G5 displaying an HSI can be switched in flight to display the attitude indicator.
In May 2017, Garmin announced a version of the G5 Electronic Flight Instrument that can be used to retrofit attitude indicators and DG/heading indicators in over 600 models of the most common certificated aircraft. That makes it easy for Cessna, Piper, Beechcraft and other aircraft owners to easily retrofit their aircraft with a low cost glass panel display. A single Garmin G5 for certificated aircraft sells for about $2500, and includes an installation kit, magnetometer and 4-hour backup battery.
When configured as a attitude indicator replacement, the Garmin G5 looks like a miniature version of a Garmin G1000 PFD (primary flight display). Like the G1000, it displays the six primary flight instruments: airspeed, altitude, vertical speed, an attitude indicator, HSI, and turn coordinator with slip/skid indicator. It also displays ground speed and ground track from a built-in GPS.
The experimental/LSA version of the Garmin G5 also has a built-in autopilot. To use it, two optional servo motors need to be installed.
Listen to episode 14 of the Aviation News Talk podcast now to learn more about how owners can retrofit older aircraft with the Garmin G5 to add glass cockpit features and reliability to these planes.
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