Garmin certifies the GFC 600 digital autopilot in select Pilatus PC-12 aircraft

Garmin certifies the GFC 600 digital autopilot in select Pilatus PC-12 aircraft

June 23, 2021 By kent

Newest certification provides additional turbine aircraft owners and operators with a modern retrofit autopilot solution

Garmin® International Inc., a unit of Garmin Ltd., today announced it has received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) approval for the
GFC 600 digital autopilot in select Pilatus PC-12/41 and PC-12/45 aircraft1. The GFC 600 digital autopilot is optimized to meet the demands of turbine aircraft, delivering superior in-flight characteristics and operational capabilities such as Vertical Navigation (VNAV), automatic Course Deviation Indicator (CDI) switching when paired with a GTN Series navigator, enhanced go-around capability and much more.

The GFC 600 certification for the PC-12 boasts superior integration with a TXi flight display configured as a primary flight display (PFD) to provide owners and operators an advanced autopilot solution that considers the wide range of speed and performance characteristics of these turbine aircraft. Further, the GFC 600 incorporates solid-state attitude with robust self-monitoring capabilities to provide superior autopilot performance, greater reliability and renowned safety benefits. Environmentally hardened autopilot servos designed for harsh operating conditions contain brushless DC motors offering improved performance and reducing maintenance requirements when compared to decades-old servo designs on the market today. Standard mark-width (6.25-inch) design of the GFC 600 mode controller ensures the autopilot controller allows for routine installation into the aircraft’s avionics stack.

Going beyond traditional autopilot capabilities such as altitude hold, vertical speed and heading modes, the GFC 600 also includes altitude preselect, VNAV1, Level Mode with the LVL button, underspeed and overspeed protection and more. Pilots can also select, couple and fly various instrument approaches, including GPS, ILS, VOR, LOC and back course approaches when paired with a compatible GPS navigator2.

Additional benefits of the GFC 600 digital autopilot for turbine aircraft include:

  • Premium functions and advanced capabilities such as altitude pre-select on a TXi flight display configured as a PFD and indicated airspeed hold mode;
  • Built-in GPS roll steering capability eliminates the need for external roll steering converters, allowing for smoother navigation tracking when installed with a compatible navigator;
  • Yaw Damping (YD) mode minimizes yawing oscillations while also helping to maintain coordinated flight;
  • Flight Director command bars displayed on a TXi flight display configured as a primary flight display (PFD);
  • Coupled ‘go-arounds’ during missed approach sequencing with a remotely-installed go-around button that commands the Flight Director to display the appropriate pitch attitude required for the missed approach procedure and activates a loaded missed approach when paired with a
    GTN 650/750 or GTN 650Xi/750Xi navigator;
  • Control wheel steering allows the pilot to adjust pitch, roll, altitude hold, vertical speed or airspeed references using the control yoke while the autopilot is engaged.

As a standard feature, pilots receive an additional safety tool in Garmin Electronic Stability and Protection (ESP) with the GFC 600 digital autopilot, which works to assist the pilot in maintaining the aircraft in a stable flight condition. ESP functions independently of the autopilot and works in the background to help pilots avoid inadvertent flight attitudes or bank angles and provides airspeed protection while the pilot is hand-flying the aircraft.

The GFC 600 digital autopilot for the Pilatus PC-12/41 and PC-12/45 aircraft requires a TXi flight display configured as a PFD with the TXi 3.20 software update and is available immediately through select Garmin authorized dealers. To view the most up-to-date aircraft STC list, to view certifications that are expected to begin in the next 12-months, or to express interest in a specific aircraft make/model for the GFC 600, visit www.garmin.com/GFC600. For additional information, visit: www.garmin.com/aviation.

Garmin’s aviation business segment is a leading provider of solutions to OEM, aftermarket, military and government customers. Garmin’s portfolio includes navigation, communication, flight control, hazard avoidance, an expansive suite of ADS-B solutions and other products and services that are known for innovation, reliability, and value. For more information, visit Garmin’s virtual pressroom at garmin.com/newsroom, contact the Media Relations department at 913-397-8200, or follow us at facebook.com/garminaviationtwitter.com/garminaviationinstagram.com/garminaviation or youtube.com/garminaviation.

1. Available aircraft include serial numbers 101-683, except serial number 545.

2. GFC 600 requires an external navigator for navigation and approach functions. See website for additional compatibility information.