Twin Otters get a major upgrade in Avionics
The Otters were upgraded with the new Garmin GNS530/GNS430W WAAS, Sandel SN4500 EHSI, Honeywell EGPWS, Honeywell TCAS, Honeywell weather radar, Satellite tracking/communication, and more to optimize the safety and the capabilities of both aircraft.
The Aircraft and Owner
These Twin Otters, known for being solid and dependable utility aircraft, are owned by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). They’re mainly operated up north as they are very adaptable bush planes for remote and northern areas.
The RCMP put out a competitive bid across Canada to remove existing avionics equipment and install new avionic systems that met RCMP requirements in a timely and cost effective manner.
The Maxcraft Solution
Following the requests of RCMP, Maxcraft was to remove all legacy avionics and install new equipment as per the contract from the RCMP.
Maxcraft had to develop and design to obtain the necessary Supplement Type Certificates (STC) Approvals. With that, they would be able to add the following equipment:
- Honeywell KTA 970 TCAS 1(Traffic Collision Alerting Systems)
- Honeywell KGP 560 EGPWS (Enhanced Ground Proximity Warning System)
- Honeywell KMD 850 MFD
- Dual N301A N.A.T Audio System
- Technisonic TFM 138B FM Transceiver
- Dual Honeywell KR87 ADF
- Dual Honeywell KNI 582 RMI
- Garmin GNS530W/GNS430W GPS/NAV/COM
- Dual Sandel SN4500 EHSI
- Satellite Tracking and Communication system
- AIM520 Standby Attitude Indicator with PS8SSB Emergency Power
- Tactical Police Radio
- Honeywell ART 2000 Weather Radar
- 115VAC Avionics Heaters
- Shadin AMS-2000 Altitude Alerter
- Honeywell KEA 130A Encoding Altimeter
- Davtron M850 Digital Chronometer
- LED Instrument Lighting
- New custom instrument panel with Maxpanel Duracoat finish
Maxcraft’s knowledge and competitive pricing won the Canadian Public Tender and we started in on our list of items as per the contract.
Our design team worked hard and received the STC’s with Transport Canada approval. The STC process was straight forward and the approvals were obtained within the required timeframe. With these STCs, the Maxcraft team was able to install all the required new systems as requested by the RCMP into, the two Twin Otters.
With the quantity of avionics to install, the team had a challenge of physically fitting all of the required equipment into the flight instrument panel. They rearranged the instrument panel with the RCMP pilots to meet their approval of the design. The team had to perform structural surgery to be able to install all the avionics requested. With their perseverance this panel was successfully completed.
Maxcraft added the Garmin navigation systems, and Dual Sandel SN4500 EHSIs, which offered the primary navigation display also the Honeywell EGPWS were specifically added to enhance the safety of the pilots.
To optimize the collision avoidance protection and airspace situation awareness the Honeywell TCAS was installed.
The Honeywell weather radar, Satellite tracking/ communication, NAT (Northern Airbourne Technology) mission audio and various tactical radio communication systems were needed to complete this upgrade in both of the Twin Otters.
A challenge with the Twin Otters was the fixed timeline, with one after the other, there was no room for error. The team worked hard and long hours to get these done on time. Their victory with these two Twin Otters, was that they maintained quality and safety while being the lowest bidder and the projects were completed to a high level of maximum craftsmanship with limited time.
The precision design and installation put these two Twin Otters at the top of their league. The pilots should now be able to adapt to all elements and be comforted with the knowledge that their aircraft has the latest and newest technology.
First test acceptance pilot comments:
“I certainly enjoyed the new equipment during the testing and training stages”