Reduce your airprox risk – with your transponder & radio
Carefree pilots who “kick the tires, and light the fires” are unlikely to be aware of the steady growth in airprox risks over the last decade.
The danger of inadvertently flying too close to another aircraft, with the risk of collision is known as a ‘risk bearing incident’. The team at the UK’s Airprox Board investigate these events and share data to promote safer skies for all.
The majority of airprox incidents take place in Class G airspace – below 3,000 feet – airspace where VFR pilots like to fly
Over the last three years there has been an average of 102 incidents (of all types) per year. In 2018 there were over 50 GA and military incidents, and 95 GA on GA incidents. The 2020 Airprox Board Report, highlighted that 80% of events involve GA and light recreational aircraft. The majority of airprox incidents take place in Class G airspace – below 3,000 feet. This is exactly the kind of airspace where VFR pilots like to fly. In practical terms, that represents around three potentially fatal collisions every month. This is a serious topic for general aviation pilots, flying VFR. However, all pilots can take practical steps to reduce the risks and improve their safety.
Lookout – the most obvious way to improve your airmanship, make sure that your regular visual look out is observed, as a vital part of your flying routine.
Fit a Trig Mode S Transponder – this can be upgraded to ADS-B Out by installing a TN72 GPS Position Source. The UK’s CAA’s Conspicuity Scheme is still active, with a rebate of £250 available, towards the cost of equipment. Using a Mode S transponder with ADS-B Out makes you visible to all aircraft equipped with an ADS-B 1090 traffic receiver.
Use your Trig 8.33 VHF radio – Trig radios have a standard feature called Dual Watch. This allows the pilot to transmit and receive on a primary channel, but to monitor a secondary channel. By using Dual Watch, you can monitor the Low-Level Common Frequency on 130.490. Civil and military pilots in Class G airspace, at or below 2,000 feet who are not in receipt of a LARS, ATC service or monitoring a listening squawk can use this frequency. Blind calls can be made to help enhance situational awareness further reducing the risk of collision
Trig Marketing Manager Jon Roper said “We encourage pilots to be aware of airprox risks, but to take preventative steps, using a Trig transponder and radio. ADS-B Out indicates your position to other aircraft, whilst monitoring 130.490 on Dual Watch improves your situational awareness. All pilots can actively improve GA safety, and reduce collision risks by using Trig equipment in this way.”
The Trig team are at the European Rotors show in Cologne.
This event is the first gathering of helicopter operators and sector specialist companies in Europe, after the disruption from Covid. Trig’s range of avionics are well suited to use in rotary types, with their compact form factor and ease of integration into any helicopter panel.
Marketing Manager Jon Roper shared, “our avionics are certified to meet helicopter vibration standards, they are easy to use and durable. Helicopter operators use Trig transponders and radio products in some challenging and demanding environments, including maritime and search and rescue. We provide a great COTS product option for airframes where a high quality and affordable solution makes sense.”
Products in rotary use include Trig’s proven TY91/TY92 compact radios and TT22 Mode S and ADS-B capable transponders. The TT31 stack transponder is a popular Mode S retrofit for legacy models. Like all Trig transponders this is ADS-B Out capable and meets ETSO-C166b. Adams Aviation, Trig’s UK distributor will be representing Trig on stand A-153 in Hall K-H8.
Attendees to Cologne, who are also participating in the Aircraft Electronics Association European Connect meeting will also be able to see Trig products at this event. Jon Roper said, “Trig is proud to be a member of the AEA, the association is a great place to meet dealers and fellow colleagues in the industry. As a European company we are delighted to be in Cologne also participating in this industry event in the same week.”
The apron at Weston Airport is buzzing, as Darragh Owens, Head of Training at Ireland’s National Flight Centre Pilot Academy welcomes a new Integrated ATPL class to the flight line.
The Pilot Academy provides professional training to over 50 full time and 200 part time students. With a fleet of seventeen Cessna aircraft, Beechcraft twins, and two helicopters, NFC has selected Trig Avionics for Mode S surveillance and ADS-B Out electronic conspicuity across their fleet.
Darragh explained, “Our base at Weston Airport is located within a complex airspace environment, situated in the Dublin terminal area, southwest of the main city airport. We also have a busy military airfield nearby. Mode S and ADS-B will significantly enhance visibility, both to other aircraft and to three different ATC services, with whom we collaborate in maintaining safe separation and operational efficiency.”
“We fully assessed Trig ADS-B Out equipment in two aircraft, and it delivered excellent results, at a manageable cost”
ADS-B Out reduces the risk of air-to-air collision, but Darragh also shared other advantages of this investment for NFC. “Mode S and ADS-B allows us to track flightpaths further afield, resulting in more accurate estimates of arrival and departure times. This technology enables data generation which will aid the analysis of operational efficiency and allow us to track incidents or other safety-related events, if they occur.”
Having considered various options, NFC selected Trig TT31 transponders each installed with a TN72 GPS Position Source. Darragh said, “This set up uses an external transponder antenna providing a strong, reliable output – it’s simple and just works as soon as the Master Switch is turned on. We fully assessed Trig ADS-B Out equipment in two aircraft, and it delivered excellent results, at a manageable cost. We now plan to dedicate a large screen in flight operations, giving staff overall visibility of the entire fleet, this will integrate with our scheduling software. The published inbound and outbound tracks from our home base are narrow – they require precise flying and excellent situational awareness by our pilots and by ATC. These functions in the Trig equipment will greatly enhance that.”
Coming out of the pandemic the NFC Pilot Academy is already seeing a resurgence in interest in professional careers with their latest ATPL Integrated Class. Darragh concluded, “Young people are coming forward, confident that the airline industry will grow again. I still get a thrill, to fly and assist students on the path towards their own dreams of flight. All staff and students will now benefit from the added safety that Trig equipment provides, on every flight we make.”
The AOPA Aviator Showcase will profile the best avionics and cockpit technology to pilots and aircraft owners.
The Trojan Phlyers Flight Demonstration Team are at this event to share their aviation expertise. They will also be representing and demonstrating Trig Avionics products on Booth number 14 in the Exhibition Hall, at Fort Worth Alliance Airport Texas, on the 1st of October.
The Trojan Phlyers have a growing profile, performing their amazing close formation two ship display – flying the famous T-28 Trojan warbird. Their association with Trig Avionics evolved from their proven experience of using these avionics in the toughest display conditions. Team Leader Chip Lamb explained,
“Our T-28 airplanes use Trig’s well regarded Mode S and ADS-B Out and VHF equipment. We are flying the Trig flag for our hometown crowd at this event. We rely on these certified avionics to guarantee our participation and safety at airshows. We can genuinely recommend Trig to AOPA pilots – these avionics have worked well in our Trojans, even in high temperature, high humidity, and high G airshow environment.”
Chip Lamb is a retired USAF pilot with combat experience. He extensively flew the F4 Phantom and F16 Falcon in service. His wingman, Robert Johnson is a civilian pilot, with the skills and experience to handle an airplane that weighs over four tons. The team promises speed, smoke, thunder, and excitement – all delivered as part of their unique flying routine!
Chip shared, “Sadly due to Covid travel restrictions our friends from Trig are unable to attend the showcase. We are however looking forward to meeting pilots, talking about flying and demonstrating Trig’s VHF Com radios, audio panels, navigation, and GPS equipment. As we have discovered Trig provides airplane owners with compelling features, quality and value.”
Marketing Manager at Trig, Jon Roper said, “It’s a great opportunity to meet Chip and Robert at the Aviator Showcase. Come and see Trig products and discover how flying with Trig can benefit your aircraft too.”
Find out more at www.thetrojanphlyers.com
Photo credit – Larry Ley
Seventy-five years ago, bread rationing in Britain had just been introduced. George Formby, comedian, and entertainer was awarded an OBE. Cinema queues were waiting to see ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ which was on general release.
The Light Aircraft Association was also formed in this year 1946.
Today the LAA’s core values remain – encouraging ordinary people to build and fly light aircraft for pleasure. The LAA’s 75th Anniversary takes place at Sywell Aerodrome this weekend, 3rd-5th of September. This is the largest fly-in event, post Covid, and is keenly anticipated by pilots and LAA members from across the UK.
Trig Avionics will be exhibiting at the show in stand 69, in the LAA Village area. Jon Roper, Trig Marketing Manager shared, “Our range of avionics are well suited to meet the needs of LAA aircraft owners. We will be on hand to help both new and existing customers. Of particular interest, the CAA Conspicuity Rebate Scheme has recently been extended into 2022. The Rally presents a compelling opportunity for pilots to see our certified ADS-B Out products. Our TT21 Mode S transponder and TN72 GPS, together provide a certified ADS-B Out to improve flight safety and they can attract a money saving CAA rebate too.”
Trig will have a full suite of avionics available for pilots to see at the show. For more information click on the CAA Rebate Scheme.