Garmin Introduces AOA Indicator

New angle of attack gauge to be offered for the certified and experimental market.

A nifty little safety device that is getting more and more recognition in the aviation industry is the angle of attack indicator. Avionics and personal GPS production giant Garmin announced today that it is in the process of developing its own AOA unit named the GI 260 AOA.

The GI 260 provides pilots with audible and visual alerts when the angle of attack of the airplane reaches the critical angle, indications that the airplane is about to stall. Garmin hopes to bring its product to the market in the third quarter of this year. Various options for certified airplanes will be available at prices starting at $1,499.

Garmin also hopes to make the GI 260 available to the experimental market even sooner. A version compatible with Garmin's G3X PFD/MFD display is expected to be available in the second quarter.

The FAA recently recognized the importance of the AOA indicator and announced a more streamlined certification guidelines, using ASTM standards rather than the more onerous FAA certification process, for this type of unit in hopes that more widespread installation of AOAs in general aviation cockpits will improve the general aviation accident rate. The FAA's announcement allows manufacturers to develop and produce and install the units at a significantly lower cost, savings that are being passed down to the consumers.

Bendix King's KLR 10 lift reserve indicator got the green light from the FAA last week. Alpha Systems and Safe Flight Instruments are also soon expected to introduce their offerings of AOA indicators to the market.

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