AEA Pilot's Guide 2018-2019 - 51

If you accidentally encounter IFR conditions, you engage the system,
and it will automatically go into altitude hold and execute a coordinated
180-degree turn to take you out of IMC. We get feedback from our
customers in the experimental market all the time praising that feature."
TruTrak Vizion
TruTrak is the company the Experimental Aircraft Association partnered
with to obtain FAA approval to STC the installation of its noncertified
Vizion autopilot in the Cessna 172 series of aircraft. That approval was
granted by the FAA on the eve of AirVenture and cleared the way for
TruTrak to begin selling the units during the show.
As Andrew Barker, TruTrak's president and CEO, explained it, the EAA
holds the FAA STC and provides advocacy and support for the process,
but TruTrak did all the systems development. The newly STC'd Vizion
autopilot is actually derived from the company's popular family of systems
for the experimental market.
"We have sold more than 15,000 autopilots since we introduced them
in 1999," he said. "They're proven to be extremely reliable and robust.
We currently have over 1.5 million flight hours on our systems and have
enjoyed an excellent service and safety history."
All of which, no doubt, helped TruTrak and the EAA circumnavigate the
FAA's STC approval process.
While the STC'd Vizion has its roots in the noncertified model,
Barker explained that along with a long list of common autopilot
features and functions, the STC'd version introduces a few new
features including a new emergency level mode and AEP (bank angle
protection mode).
"AEP is kind of like envelope protection, but in our case, it's just
in the lateral axis," he stated. "It's like a force-feedback system.
When the autopilot is powered up but not currently flying the aircraft,
should the aircraft exceed 45 degrees of bank, AEP will engage and
command the system to decrease the bank to 40 degrees and then
automatically turn itself off again.
"The pilot can override AEP if they want to, but it's a reminder that
you are approaching a steep bank angle. This and the emergency level
mode are there to help reduce
the chances of low-altitude,
loss-of-control accidents."
Barker said that another
differentiator is the Vizion's
servo solution. "We use velocity servos instead of position
servos, and they have no
software in them. There is no
way a short or potentiometer
failure can make the servo run
uncommanded. The simplicity is a key to added system
safety." q
TruTrak Vizion autopilot

- 51 -

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of AEA Pilot's Guide 2018-2019

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http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/pilotsguide/19-20
http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/pilotsguide/18-19
http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/pilotsguide/17-18
http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/pilotsguide/16-17
http://www.brightcopy.net/allen/pilotsguide/15-16
http://www.nxtbook.com/allen/pilotsguide/2014-2015
http://www.nxtbook.com/allen/pilotsguide/2013-2014
http://www.nxtbook.com/allen/pilotsguide/2012-2013
http://www.nxtbook.com/allen/pilotsguide/2011-2012
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com