In a milestone that marks the first certification of a modern autoland system on a light, personal jet, Cirrus Aircraft and Garmin Aviation announced the approval of Safe Return on the Cirrus Vision Jet. Cirrus also celebrated the 200th delivery of the Vision Jet in July, solidifying its position as the best-selling general aviation jet as indicated earlier this year via the General Aviation Manufacturers Association 2019 report.
“With Safe Return, we are making personal aviation more accessible, elevating the passenger experience and taking the next step towards autonomous flight,” said Zean Nielsen, CEO of Cirrus Aircraft. “The Vision Jet sets a new standard in personal travel with the combination of Safe Return and CAPS, offering the ultimate level of safety, control and comfort for the pilot and passengers.”
Safe Return integrates the innovative Garmin Autoland system into the G2 model of the jet alongside its other unique safety features—primarily the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System (CAPS) and the Garmin Perspective Touch flight deck. The system is activated by a button accessible to passengers on the ceiling of the cabin in the event of the pilot’s incapacitation. Safe Return then assumes control of the jet, navigating to the nearest suitable airport based on current weather, nearby terrain, and aircraft performance. The system initiates an approach and completes a landing without pilot or passenger intervention. Safe Return can be disabled by the pilot at any time using the yoke-mounted autopilot disconnect button.
“Garmin and Cirrus share a passion for designing and engineering products without compromise. Together, we have delivered some of the finest safety-enhancing technologies to our customers over the years, and we are proud to now add the certification of Garmin Autoland in the Cirrus Vision Jet to that growing list of accomplishments,” said Phil Straub, Garmin’s executive vice president and managing director of aviation. “Congratulations to our collective teams who contributed to the certification of Autoland on the Vision Jet, a technology that will undoubtedly have lasting impacts on the safety of our aviation industry and the lives of our customers.”
The G2 Vision Jet features a cruise speed of 305 ktas, a max range of 1,275 nm, and a takeoff distance of 2,036 ft. The jet’s payload is advertised at 1,400 lbs, able to accommodate up to five adults and two children.