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Garmin GWX 8000 system certified for Piper M-class singles

Piper Aircraft announced that the Garmin GWX 8000 weather radar system is certified and available for Piper's M-class line of aircraft. Photo by Chris Rose. The Garmin GWX 8000 is certified and available for the M350, M500, and M600/SLS. The system’s automatic mode and 3D volumetric scanning are available for the owner-flown market for the first time, Piper said. These features are intended to provide easier weather threat identification, increased situational awareness, and a reduction in the pilot’s workload. Activating automatic mode places the system in weather mode and activates 3D scanning. Automatic adjustment of the system’s antenna sweep pattern builds a picture of the scanned volume.

Turbulence detection and hail or lightning prediction help pilots to avoid turbulence in flight by recognizing air that contains moisture or particulates, according to Garmin. Areas of likely turbulence can be depicted out to a range of about 40 nautical miles. Identified areas of hail or lightning are displayed as yellow Xs or magenta triangles.

Weather attenuated color highlight technology points out shadowing effects of cell activity and highlights areas where radar returns are weakened or attenuated by intense precipitation, Garmin said.

Photo courtesy of Garmin.

Optional predictive wind shear identification detects “a combination of updrafts and downdrafts and Doppler-effect that result in wind shear formation,” Garmin said. This feature is fully automated throughout the takeoff and landing phases of flight. “Pilots receive aural wind shear notifications, as well as visual indications on a dedicated Garmin display.”

Scan/refresh rates on radar images are four scans at five seconds plus five seconds for processing, or 25 seconds between images, Garmin said.

Garmin announced the GWX 8000 in April. The system will sell for $20,000, Piper said.

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