Autopilot & Flight Control Systems

Perhaps one of the most important systems for IFR flight, modern autopilots offer large amounts of automation and workload reduction. The advent of GPS Roll Steering or GPSS allows for complete GPS approach coupling with guidance right to the threshold. This level of automation was once only found in transport category jets but is now available for nearly any aircraft and at affordable prices.

The model 55X autopilot, pictured here with the STEC altitude preselector, is the flagship flight control system from S-TEC. It has integral GPSS digital steering as well as vertical speed command and automatic electric pitch trim. It conveniently mounts in the radio stack.

The S-TEC System 30 is an entry-level but well-equipped autopilot. It’s a  rate-based system which  eliminates the need for expensive attitude gyros and since its electrically driven is unaffected by a vacuum failure.  The turn coordinator and roll computer are combined within a single instrument which saves valuable panel space. The System 30 has Altitude Hold with Trim Prompting,  full Nav and GPS coupling capability as well as Heading Command when interfaced with an appropriate heading gyro or HSI system.

The S-TEC GPSS steering system can be added to any S-TEC autopilot. It’s compatible with most panel-mounted GPS systems. When interfaced with the Garmin GNS430W or 530W navigators it provides hands-free coupling through Procedure Turns and Holding Patterns.

Manufacturer’s Links

STEC Century Flight Systems DAC