You might already have heard of Xavion. It’s MY answer to the question: How much can an iPad do to help you out in the cockpit?
The answer is: A LOT.
Available as a free download in the iTunes App Store, Xavion is an iPad app that is designed to run in a REAL plane, providing all the backup information possible. For example, Xavion uses the gyros and accelerometers in the iPad to give you a complete Synthetic Vision System, complete with with estimated airspeed, altitude and heading.
Xavion offers a full moving map, and an FMS to let you enter any desired flight plan and see it on the map. It also allows you to back up your navigation, and functions as 6-Pack or EFIS!
Xavion can show you real Sectional Charts, Low and High Enroute Instrument Charts, and Approach Plates (with the appropriate Seattle Avionics subscription). All of these are shown with overlays for your aircraft, NEXRAD weather, and winds aloft, thus also backing up your in-flight weather.
Finally, Xavion is always running a tiny little flight simulator inside of it, imagining a power-off glide to every airport within gliding range of the airplane. If you ever have an engine failure, then Xavion will show you the approach that offers the best safety margin as 3-D hoops in the sky that you just fly through to arrive at the runway! So, Xavion also works to back up your engine, in a way…. and that’s not bad for an app!
Of course, since Xavion runs on an iPhone or iPad, this whole system runs on an electrical system that is totally isolated form the aircraft electrical system. This partially backs up your electrical system, since these backup avionics will continue to work after complete electrical failure.
And now, Xavion is FREE to use with X-Plane. So, if you are a pilot and want to try Xavion out in the sim at no charge, you can download it freely and use it with X-Plane all you like. This is professional-level flight training at NO cost. (Then, if you like it, you can buy a $19.99/month or $199.00/year subscription to use Xavion in a REAL airplane as well, getting all the benefits outlined above). And, as for X-Plane sim-pilots only… you can operate the simulator like I operate the real plane when I fly, using Xavion with X-Plane freely.
So, go to the App Store and download Xavion… I never fly without it!
– Austin Meyer, creator