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WAAS in Europe? (also GPSS / roll steering)

I have a Garmin 530/430 combo that can be upgraded to WAAS, for a few K euros.

Does it make any sense to do this upgrade in Europe since WAAS is supposed to work in US only? Since the new EGNOS system is compatible with WAAS should I expect my upgraded Garmin units to perform better across Europe?

I wonder if there’s any difference from a practical perspective, or I’d better use the money for other avionics upgrades (AHRS, TIS/TAS/PCAS)…

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

LRIA, Romania

Yes, without restriction. I upgraded my GNS430, much better performance, and you get the LPV approaches and all that.

LSZH, Switzerland

The GNSx30 W-upgrade is EGNOS compatible. Not sure but I believe the air interface is the same and EGNOS is just a different constellation of satellites and ground stations. I upgraded one of my GNS430s recently for around 4100€. Very happy about it.

Garmin will deliver the upgraded unit with updated terrain data and a nav datacard containing the last cycle, and a new antenna. You may want to order a spare card from Jeppesen as well as the Skybound G2 adapter which is compatible with the 16 MB datacard (orange label) if you have an older version of the adapter. You will also need to ask Jeppesen to upgrade your subscription to W.

Last Edited by at 23 May 12:11
LFPT, LFPN

In Europe we call it sbas and your upgrade to GNSx30W will work just fine off our satellites (EGNOS)

@Aviathor, 1400€?? It sounds like a real bargain. Where did you upgrade it?

My quotation is $4,900 for each unit!

Last Edited by AlexTB20 at 23 May 11:45
LRIA, Romania

On the Garmin website the price right now (without shipping) is $4,395.00

https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/597181

LRIA, Romania

AlexTB20 wrote:

@Aviathor, 1400€?? It sounds like a real bargain. Where did you upgrade it?

My quotation is $4,900 for each unit!

Apologies. I may have reversed two digits! I would need to access my invoice, but you are right. It was more like 4.500 €. Garmin does the upgrade, so the prices do not vary (you need to go though a dealer). I recall that my unit was sent to Garmin in the UK by an avionics shop in the NL.

I chose not to upgrade both units. Several reasons for that.

  1. Both of my COM/NAV antennaes were mounted in the tail where the vertical stabiliser may prevent a clear view of the satellites. I had to relocate the WAAS antenna to the top of the cabin in order to improve reception of EGNOS satellites.
  2. I did not see great value in upgrading the second unit, apart from FPL crossfeed between the two units.

Note that the WAAS antenna must be installed as close to horizontal as possible.

Last Edited by at 23 May 12:19
LFPT, LFPN

Reportedly, the WAAS upgrade on a GNS box is a whole new internals; just the box remains.

It’s not worth doing (for that much money) unless you want LPV.

Incidentally I wonder if you automatically get LPV coupled to the autopilot when you upgrade to “W”, if the installation was previously ILS capable. @GarryIAE might know.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

liftvectorup wrote:

In Europe we call it sbas

Well… The function is called SBAS (Satellite based augmentation system). There are different systems providing this function in different areas of the Earth. The European system is called EGNOS, the US one is called WAAS.

Last Edited by Airborne_Again at 23 May 13:15
ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

Peter wrote:

Reportedly, the WAAS upgrade on a GNS box is a whole new internals; just the box remains.

It’s not worth doing (for that much money) unless you want LPV.

Incidentally I wonder if you automatically get LPV coupled to the autopilot when you upgrade to “W”, if the installation was previously ILS capable.

Peter,

Most of the guts are not changed, but one of the internal boards is changed and a new antenna is provided.

The WAAS version bundles with terrain and obstacles and other features that are US oriented, example ADS-B, XM weather, flightplan transfer, …

If the installer followed the install manual, then it should do vertically guided procedures coupled to most autopilots, but your autopilot is an exception. If the installer doesn’t need to RTFM and knows it all, then ILS may work but LPV and vertical guidance not work.

KUZA
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