Garmin unveils weather radar retrofit and Cessna Citation CJ2 avionics modernization program

Avatar for Brent BundyBy Brent Bundy | March 25, 2024

Estimated reading time 3 minutes, 56 seconds.

Garmin highlighted two new offerings during the Aircraft Electronics Association (AEA) 2024 conference and trade show.

First up was the announcement that the GWX 8000 StormOptix Weather Radar with Auto Mode will soon be approved for retrofit in GTN Xi navigators and TXi flight displays.

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This availability greatly expands the compatibility lists. Garmin Aviation public relations specialist Mikayla Minnick explained: “Previously, it’s been on our integrated flight decks. This is the first time that you can add it to your airplane if you have our GTN Xi.”

The GWX 8000 has been available since 2021 and brings many desired features lacking in other weather monitoring systems.

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“One of the great things about this is the auto mode. Not only is the StormOptix already on if your GTX is on, but it also eliminates the need to manually tilt the radar to find the storm. This system will automatically adjust the tilt of the radar dish to simplify operations for the pilot,” Minnick said.

Additionally, the GWX 8000 features turbulence detection and hail and lightning prediction. Traditional radar systems display readout in a four-color display. The 8000 quadruples that to 16 colors on the available 10, 12, and 14-inch screens.

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Proprietary Weather Attenuated Color Highlight (WATCH) further aids pilots with weather cell activity shadowing effects highlighted when returns are weakened. Ground clutter suppression is also included. Availability is expected soon.

Garmin was also excited to unveil the STC for the complete avionics modernization program of the Cessna Citation CJ2. The upcoming STC will create an all-Garmin integrated solution. The retrofit will replace the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) system with two touchscreen G600 TXi flight displays for primary flight display (PFD) and multi-function display (MFD), GTN Xi navigators with next-gen GPS/NAVCOMM capabilities, GFC 600 autopilot, GWX 8000 StormOptix, 4GLTE cellular or WIFI connection via the optional GDL 60 datalink PlaneSync, and more.

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Expected to be available Q2 of this year, installations can be completed through the Garmin authorized dealer network. Garmin also plans to offer a similar upgrade package to the Cessna Citation CJ1 in the near future.

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