Cirrus Introduces ESP Envelope Protection

Cirrus Aircraft was first with an integrated whole aircraft parachute system, and continues the tradition of safety innovation with the introduction on Monday of its Perspective ESP flight stability augmentation system. Available on all SR-series aircraft for delivery this fall, the system ensures the aircraft will remain within a safe operating envelope even when the autopilot is disengaged. If roll or pitch exceed safe parameters, the ESP system uses the autopilot servos to reestablish safe flying conditions. The system works in the background and can be overridden by the pilot — or switched off when desired, as in the training role when steep banks and extreme pitch attitudes are appropriate. A Perspective by Garmin software upgrade, announced at the same time, includes a hypoxia prevention/automatic descent mode feature, in which the system will automatically cause the aircraft to descend to a safe altitude should the pilot become incapacitated due to lack of oxygen at high altitude.

Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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