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Xavion App

Has anyone tried this out?

Looks very interesting - I was going to to download the demo which can be linked with xplane, but nice to hear if anyone has had any success.

EGBP, United Kingdom

Interesting. I am tempted to download it, its on the Appstore priced at £69.99 in the UK.

I think in a real engine failure I would hope I could (and would have to) deal with the situation based on the traditional ways, rather than firing up an app on the iPad and trying to fly through the hoops like I would on a PS3 game. But, if I was im IMC and I had an instrument or a power failures, then I think this looks like a good cheap alternative to the Dynon D1 system, or any others that require external sensor equipment.

The main thing that concerns me is that it says that it "asks the question how good an A-I copilot and backup system an iPad can be". OK, for £69.99, compared to ~£1000 for the Dynon D1, I guess you cant buy that answer in the Xavion device, hence (maybe for legal reasons) they are just considering this to be an experiment. As with anything non certified, you have to use at face value.

I had the same thoughts... My guess is that with the idevice internal accelerometers the results are not going to be great. Suspect if you team it with the Levil AHRS at $795 the results are going to be similar to the Dynon D1 (and at a similar price). With the D1 you have everything in one device and no fiddling about setting up connections from the iPhone/iPad, but lose the rather clever software functionality.

I might just take a punt and see how it works out. If you do likewise let me know how you get on?

EGBP, United Kingdom

I'd be surprised if it was any use at all if only fired up after the problem arose. GPS's moving at speed can take some time to get a signal, especially if they are in a different location to previously (as it will be in an aircraft).

Add to that that the iPad has no wifi or mobile phone signal in flight (or very weak) to help it get the fix, and the fact that some people have problems holding a fix on an iPad, I suspect it would take too long to get sorted to be of any use.

And that is before you get into the distraction factor.

If it's to be of any use, I think that it would need to be on from before take off.

Some modern devices have solid state gyros instead of accelerometers. Accelerometers would be useless for an AH in a coordinated turn. Do iPads have gyros?


EIWT Weston

I might just take a punt and see how it works out. If you do likewise let me know how you get on?

Will do, I always like new toys to play with :-) I often fly with another pilot so it gives me a chance to sit there any play with things on the iPad. I got paid recently so the temptation factor is quite high right now :-)

Correction - the iPad and iPhone both have solid state gyros and accelerometers. There is quite some detail on how they make this work on the x-avionics site. Obviously the app needs to be running for the flight duration and the device needs to be firmly mounted in the correct orientation and ideally damped to get the best results.

The Levil AHRS is a box of external solid state gyros and accelerometers which cost substantially more than an iPad/iPhone so one would expect the quality of the output would be significantly better (apparently zero drift).

EGBP, United Kingdom

I have bought the app and will test it out this weekend when flying to Calais for lunch there. Looking forward to meet some of you there.

EDLE, Netherlands

If I fly en-route with a 40 knot tailwind, the Xavion will not know that. If a get an engine failure with an airport a few miles behind me, how will it know whether that airport is within gliding range - BEFORE I turn back, reducing my ground speed by 80 knots ?

EKRK, Denmark

I bought the app and installed it on my iPhone and iPad. The first thing that bothers me is that it only works with the iPad in Portrait mode, while I like to use my iPad in landscape mode. There is no setting to switch from Portrait to Landscape, only to flip from one Portrait to the opposite Portrait mode.

Then, it seems to be a self learning system, where you first have to fly for it to get to know your speeds. I would have preferred it if I could have just configured the aircraft with its best glide, stall speeds, etc.

No clear manual.

I will give it a try this Sunday when flying to Calais.

EDLE, Netherlands

It wouldn't ... However the software is planning on a much steeper descent than is optimal for the aircraft to off set (to an extent) for this. the technique they are using to attempt to an assure a landing is explained comprehensively on their site. Obviously there is as always an onus on the pilot to apply common sense and if you know you have a stonking tail wind then you apply conventional techniques.

However I'd be surprised if the software couldn't learn over time an average sensible groundspeed and thus deduce if at any time you are experiencing a considerable head or tail wind. Out of the box it needs 'training' in the aircraft glide performance in various configurations.

Frankly it could be a load rubbish, but evidently some smart people who write arguably the most accurately modelled simulation tools think it will work, AOPA have had a play and seem to think it works. Will be good to hear what AeroPlus thinks :)

EGBP, United Kingdom
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