Nextant Gains STC for Pro Line Fusion Avionics in Challenger 604s

The Challenger 604 first acquired the path to a Pro Line Fusion integrated flight deck in 2017 with the announcement at EBACE. Nextant

Nextant Aerospace announced on Tuesday that it has received FAA approval for a supplemental type certificate (STC) for an upgraded software package for Challenger 604s with Pro Line Fusion avionics.

The upgrade can be installed by current operators of Pro Line Fusion-equipped Challengers for no additional charge.

Nextant worked with Bombardier and Collins Aerospace on the development of the STC. It solves an issue that the model had with Pro Line Fusion upgrades that the trio have partnered on since the path was first announced in May 2017.

The original Fusion software—as initially developed—didn’t incorporate features generated by the flight management system, such as:

  • Predicted performance
  • Calculated thrust
  • V-speeds

These already existed on the 604s with Pro Line IV—but pilots had to return to manually calculating these figures following the upgrade.

Now with FMS-calculated thrust and V-speed capability, as well as FMS-predicted performance similar to the Precision Plus mode on the Pro Line IV, the software upgrade also includes:

  • FMS vertical situation display (VSD) for enhanced situational awareness,
  • European Aeronautical Telecommunication Network Baseline 1 (ATN B1) Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) functionality to meet European and overseas mandates
  • RNP AR .3 approach functionality, which further improves the aircraft’s safety and operational capabilities.

Validation based on the FAA approval is in process with EASA, Transport Canada, and other civil aviation authorities outside of the U.S. An FAA Flight Standardization Board (FSB) Operational Evaluation for training requirements is also underway to support Part 135 operators upgrading to the Fusion Version 2 software.

Based in Maryland, Julie is an editor, aviation educator, and author. She holds an airline transport pilot certificate with Douglas DC-3 and CE510 (Citation Mustang) type ratings. She's a CFI/CFII since 1993, specializing in advanced aircraft and flight instructor development. Follow Julie on Twitter @julieinthesky.

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