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What proportion of GA IFR aircraft are equipped for LPV approaches?

Another thread on here discussed the PRNAV document from the UK CAA. It talks at length about Baro-VNAV (surely irrelevant for GA, perhaps found on some Bizjets) and how LNAV/VNAV approaches using augmented GPS (ie with WAAS or EGNOS) aren’t generally supported in Europe. LPV approaches are currently limited to 250 feet in Europe, and there is no concession on RVR as with an autopilot flown ILS.

Peter mentioned that his avionics fit doesn’t currently support those. Like many, it would be a very expensive upgrade.

It did get me wondering what proportion of the European IFR GA non-training fleet is currently equipped to that standard. Presumably 99.9% has some form of GPS because you must comply with B-RNAV (maybe someone has a different method); I’d guess 50% or more may have EGNOS. In many cases, lack of expensive paperwork approvals might inhibit legal use of perfectly capable devices. I flew a club aircraft at the weekend which had a 430W that was clearly placarded “B-RNAV only: GPS glideslope advisory only” or something similar. Training aircraft typically wouldn’t have this kit – there is currently a European-wide ban on using an LPV approach for an IR Skill Test or Proficiency Check.

It is probably higher in France and Germany which have more of these approaches available for use.

It may be possible to derive some of this data from filed IFR flight plans, but would need to allow for
a) Equipped aircraft that don’t have paperwork approvals
b) Incorrectly or incomplete declaration of avionics capabilities in the flightplans
c) Pilots deliberately not wanting to declare capabilities they are unfamiliar with

Anyone else care to guess what the proportion might be?

I’d also venture to suggest that your typical non-EGNOS GPS receiver (eg Garmin 430) could meet the RNAV1 specifications easily, but you’d need a mountain of paperwork to get this agreed.

FlyerDavidUK, PPL & IR Instructor
EGBJ, United Kingdom

I believe any Cirrus with a WAAS enabled GPS can fly LPV.

From my IR training in the US last year I can report that LPV was the norm. The airfield was an uncontrolled one outside Philadelphia and it had two LPV approaches. I flew with Garmin Perspective and Avidyne R8 with GNS430.

During the practical exam the DPE had me do the LPV with a circle to land and all in all there was a lot of emphasis on LPV, VOR-A but not so much on ILS. Talk was that LPV will replace all the others over time and after hesitating initially the FAA now “gets it”.

So my impression is that if it a Cirrus with more or less recent avionics, then LPV is no problem. With the newer systems (Avidyne R9 and Perspective/G1000) even curved paths are not an issue. About the latter I would have to dig up posts on COPA that talk about the requirements for pilots to fly them but I do remember that people were eager to make sure their equipment is able to use them.

Frequent travels around Europe

I had a NP GPS approach approval for the DR400 fitted with a King KLN89B and used it quire regularly to commute to an airfield in Northern France.

Currently The DR400 is under major rebuild but the intention is that it will have a dual GTN 650’s.

I don’t think there is a ban on LPV aproaches at IR skill tests, I can’t remember for sure what I did on my last LPC but I know I did some sort of RNAV approach.

I did an LNAV/VNAV last night, it is all very simple, vertical guidance was spot on but the lateral guidance seemed not as good as the ILS below the DA this may well have been because of the cross wind gradient in the last few hundred feet.

I believe any Cirrus with a WAAS enabled GPS can fly LPV.

That means all SR20/22s from 2007 (introduction of the G3 model) upwards, plus all the ones that a W upgrade for their 430s or installed GTN650s.

Some late G2s also had standard WAAS, but very few.

I don’t think there is a ban on LPV approaches at IR skill tests

Neither did I until I read this from CAP 773 Dec 2014 Page 53

At the time of writing, the use of 3D RNAV approach for IR revalidation or renewal does not qualify for either the non-precision approach or the precision approach requirements of PART FCL Appendix 7 (IR skill test) or Appendix 9 (proficiency check (PC)). Examiners may include an RNAV approach of the type frequently flown by the applicant, but the proficiency check must, however, include an ILS and a non-precision approach (NPA).

In the US, an LPV approach can be included but doesn’t count as a precision approach unless the DA is 300 feet or less.

Last Edited by DavidC at 27 Jan 19:46
FlyerDavidUK, PPL & IR Instructor
EGBJ, United Kingdom

I would be surprised if 40% of the IFR aircraft in the US are equipped with WAAS capability. I would guess that 85+% have some sort of IFR GPS installed, but there are still many aircraft that have no IFR GPS capability, probably around 10 to 15%.

KUZA, United States

A humble question of an IR student: LVP is lo viz procedures, but what is LPV?

Last Edited by Bobo at 28 Jan 08:46

LPV stands for Localizer Performance with Vertical guidance, i.e. GPS approach similar to ILS down to DH 250ft (or more), soon 200ft.

LSZK, Switzerland

A humble question of an IR student: LVP is lo viz procedures, but what is LPV?

Darley Moor, Gamston (UK)

Thanks! Googled LPV, but didn’t get any wiser.

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