NavWorx ADS600B Transciever
This year is an exciting year of advancement for ADS-B
Technologies! Somewhere around the OSH time period I received my
ADS600B Transceiver, which was a very simple swap from my ADS600 that I
had previously. The ADS600B does have a different case, with a
slightly larger footprint, which caused me to have to re-work my
mounting in the RV-10 tail...widening the footprint mounting
width. I simply added a plate to my existing angle that was
attached to my J-stringers and gave it a secure way to fasten to the
existing angle brackets. The antenna wires hooked up with no
problem, since I had left a small amount of slack in the cables.
The connector is pin-for-pin compatible, but as you will read below, I
did eventually add one additional pin.
To also give you a little more information about my ADS600B, I have the
ARINC equipped version, which turns out to be a good idea for many
people. ADS-B systems like this need a Pressure ALT (PALT) input,
and depending on your system, many people can send that via RS232 from
an encoder, from a transponder via RS232, or from a transponder like
the GTX330 via ARINC. For many reasons, the GTX330 is the smart buy in
a transponder...it offers you future options to upgrade to 1090ES for
ADS-B out if you wish, it gives you ARINC in/out ports, and it gives
you an additional RS232 output...all of which can be handy depending on
your particular system.
Here are photos of my install
As most of you know, ever since NavWorx came out with their ADS600,
they've worked to get it integrated to the Chelton systems in a
secondary interface method, as well as worked at getting it integrated
to a variety of experimental EFIS systems....experimental because in
the certified world, Garmin and Avidyne are the only big players and
it's unlikely Garmin will go out of it's way to help anyone else
integrate to their units...preferring to overcharge the world for their
offerings. NavWorx ADS600B is their more recent ADS-B
UAT that also provides the ADS-B "Out" as required in the future by a
mandate. The ADS600B has a transmitter on board that has many of the
same operational functions as a transponder. The integration of the
NavWorx ADS-B systems to the Cheltons is basically a 2-option thing.
1) From day 1, NavWorx would interface with the Chelton screens if you
configure your chelton as "ADS-B" in the limits. This interface
provides both TIS-B (Traffic) and FIS-B (Weather) to the Chelton. The
NavWorx actually supports more data products than the Chelton will, if
Chelton would take the time to add some features to their software.
Utilizing the ADS-B method of integration, if you are currently today
flying with no weather or traffic interface, you can get BOTH on your
chelton, for basically just the cost of the ADS600/ADS600B. It's a
simple serial interface, and you could have NEXRAD and other services.
You would need to purchase the ADS600/ADS600B, and likely do not need
the ARINC input, although it could be helpful to have it.
2) Over the past couple years there was the ADS600 which was
receive-only for ADS-B, and NavWorx worked on a custom interface for
our systems to allow those of us with Satellite weather via WSI to keep
using WSI, but still get the benefits of TIS-B Traffic input. WSI uses
the serial port that the ADS600 would use in ADS-B mode, and if you are
in ADS-B mode, you cannot have a separate TCAS/Traffic system at least
on the Chelton Sport systems. NavWorx designed an interface that would
our existing port for TCAS, and feed us traffic via that port. Before
NavWorx, many Chelton owners may have even purchased the DAC GDC34A
ARINC to Serial
converter, to connect to your GTX330 transponder for Mode S (TIS-A)
Traffic. I had that before, and it worked very well, but as you know,
Mode S coverage areas are much smaller than ADS-B's roll-out, and they
are planned to be phased out....while at the same time, ADS-B roll-out
is progressing rapidly, and even TODAY is basically already in a
position where it has covered all or almost all of the Mode S coverage
areas, and also covered significant portions of the rest of the
countryside. This 2nd connection method basically replaced the GDC34A
with the NavWorx box, and connected to your Chelton screen, with the
option to also connect to your GTX330 and perform "Composite
TIS"....their feature to bring you Mode S coverge when in Mode S areas,
and TIS-B coverage when in ADS-B coverage areas. That too was working
well on the ADS600 for me.
Then the FAA kind of mucked it up a bit. They started on their newer
ADS-B ground station rollout, to ONLY broadcast ADS-B services if there
was a participating (broadcasting) airplane in that service area. They
wanted to force everyone to buy/have ADS-B OUT, in order for us to get
ADS-B IN. I was able to fly a common flight from Wisconsin to Florida
some areas were broadcasting traffic to me, but some areas weren't. The
limitation was, I wasn't broadcasting MY information.
Current Segment 1 Roll-out (Note: from experience, it looks like this
is mostly implemented!)
If you look at the coverage map in the post above, you will see that
the segment 1 roll-out has prgressed pretty far. I've seen traffic
targets in areas I never though I would, like remote Idaho and East
Oregon, over some
really empty areas of Iowa, and just generally in many areas I never
would have had a chance to use Mode S.
Luckily NavWorx was able to gain FCC approval on their ADS600B, which
is an IN/OUT version of their box, that made it possible for me to
fully receive traffic in many more locations. And I've found on a
couple trips now, that the coverage is pretty astounding...really.
Broadcasting my position has allowed me to receive in areas I didn't
think I could. Now, the ADS600B connected as in method 1, as an "ADS-B"
box, is something that worked "out of the box", as that communication
standard was well established and known to NavWorx. That 2nd method of
connection, Traffic only, took quite a bit of engineering on their
behalf to bring to our Chelton screens. It is important though, because
the WX services offered by ADS-B will never EVER be able to be as fully
available in coverage, especially on the ground, as WSI is. So I'm a
dedicated customer to WSI, but I want my ADS-B traffic. This interface
gave me the option to do that. On the ADS600, the interfacing was
complete a long time ago, and I had been flying that system for quite a
while with good results. With the release of the ADS600B, it was a new
addition of hardware, and a complete change of software, so they had to
hit the integration efforts again to make it work well for our Chelton
systems. Recently V.2.32 of their software came out which brought the
ADS600B back to fully functional status for our Chelton users, and
V.2.43 added a great feature beyond that, that I'll describe
pretty excited about that, as I'm soon going on another flying trip
that will put me in many good coverage areas. (Note: as of the time I
posted this to my website, the trip is completed...look for the 2010
California trip write-up for the ADS-B report)
A note about Composite-TIS: Before, where I live, I am close to MSP,
where they only had Mode S. If I flew East though to the other side of
Wisconsin, I was in an area of ADS-B coverage. Composite TIS was a
GREAT thing, because I got traffic information in both areas. My GNS480
was only hooked to my GTX330 (I believe the ADS600/600B can interface
directly to the 480 for non-chelton users), so my GNS480 would only
work for me in ModeS areas, but my Chelton, with it's forward facing
traffic on it's PFD AND on the MFD, would show both systems. Today I am
starting to find that now that MSP has ADS-B coverage, as do most of
the previous Mode-S areas, that I don't think Composite-TIS is going to
be as interesting, or perhaps even desired any longer, for many people.
I will attach some screenshots at the bottom of this post, and you'll
see duplicate traffic targets. Since ADS-B and TIS-A actually calculate
and position traffic in different methods, and things also change as
you maneuver, they sometimes overlap, and sometimes have slight errors
in their relative positions to eachother. Having duplicate targets on
screen, now that we are getting some very extended ADS-B coverage,
probably isn't worth the hassle of having it in those very few areas
where you'll currently maybe get some ModeS coverage where there isn't
ADS-B. And of course, it's a configurable option, so if you want to
turn on/off Composite-TIS, it is able to be done.
The ADS600B Transceiver can still interface to your GTX330 via ARINC,
if you buy the ARINC module for it, and that does give you the option
of Composite TIS, and also is an easy way to feed the ADS600 your
pressure altitude. I still have a GDC34A installed in my panel, and I
implemented both the ADS600 and ADS600B after upgrade, by utilizing the
same connector. I unplugged my GDC34A's cable, made a mating connector
to the harness to my ADS600(B), and just plugged it in. Since the
interface was the same, I was able to switch back and forth between
systems if needed, as they developed their hardware/software, for
I wanted to let you all know about the ADS600B's availability now. I
waited a while, since you probably all know that the system worked fine
with the Cheltons in ADS-B mode, but I wanted to wait to talk about my
installation of the ADS600B until the software was caught up so that
the TCAS-Like traffic feature and connection option was available. I
know there are many of you in my same boat, who want your WSI weather.
Now once again you can have your weather, but also get a greatly
expanded Traffic system. The price is more than 2X less than offerings
by Garmin (probably closer to 3X less) and some other companies. Also,
the interface itself to the
Chelton isn't just a simple standard interface, so it is much less
likely that you'll find other vendors that will take the time to
integrate to the Chelton in this way.
Here I will post you some
crappy pictures of the ADS-B's traffic targets. You'll note that I
still have it in Composite-TIS mode, so it gets a bit cluttered with
duplicate targets. Subsequent to this write-up, I have turned it off
for good...so I don't see those anymore. One thing that's
cool about the NavWorx is you can set the maximum target distance, so
you can choose to see 5,10,15,20,25 targets, and you can set the range
to 10,20,30,50 or whatever mileage you want. I think I'm going to set
mine down to 10 targets, with 25 mile range. It'll show you the closest
For those that want a NavWorx system, contact them at 1-888-NAVWORX
(628-9679). If you buy systems, I get no kickbacks, so I'm not pushing
them for that reason. I just think that these days, everyone should be
able to put Traffic AND weather on their Cheltons, or other EFIS
systems, and this is a great
way to do it, ESPECIALLY if you're one of those folks who only has WX
on a handheld. Now you can get NexRad on your MFD, along with lots of
other information. Also, NavWorx really did spend some time and effort
to interface to us in the experimental world, so it would be nice for
them to see that there are
those of us who want their product. (I am not affiliated with the
company in any way)
Here are traffic comparison photos between the GNS480 in my plane (ONLY
has Mode-S traffic) and the targets displayed using both ADS-B and
Mode-S via composite TIS from the ADS600B.
Above: 2 targets shown...note the same position on the Chelton, and
both ADS-B and Mode-S targets.
Above: The traffic coincides very nicely, although Mode-S and ADS-B
have different coasting times and other things that may make them
slightly different at times, for a very short period.
Above: Just another pair of photos.
Above: More targets, this time with a traffic alert!
Additional Transponder Integration!
The new integration is that now, if you have a GTX330 (and presumably
GTX327, although that isn't tested yet) transponder, you will will be
able to pass the ADS600B your squawk/ident/mode information without
having a panel-mounted control head.
One thing many people don't know about ADS-B is that the transmitter
broadcasts your info, just like a Mode S transponder, including
N-Number/ICAO code, squawk code, does IDENT, and there is a ALT mode
and Standby/GND mode too. In time, you will see NavWorx work with
experimental EFIS companies to provide a method of on-screen code
setting of the UAT, but that is one area where as you could expect,
Chelton will leave me hang, since I'm sure they won't develop that
software for our systems. As of today, you could operate those UAT's
just squawking 1200 all the time, and be fine, since they're not
required anyway. But eventually you'll need to fit and play nicely in
the IFR system and have squawk codes broadcast.
The integration that I just tested (V.2.43) with the GTX330 transponder
for monitoring the Transponders functional mode and mimic-ing what it
does. If you squawk 1234, the UAT adopts that squawk. If you IDENT, so
does the UAT. If you hit STBY, the UAT stops transmitting, if you hit
ALT, the UAT starts transmitting. This is
sweet. No control head required (whereas some users will need to put a
control head on the panel), and you have the benefit of only having to
set the squawk in one place...the transponder.
The GTX330 is the perfect transponder for this because it has ARINC
outputs, which will be nice because with ARINC out, you can have the
option of Composite TIS if you want, but it also feeds Pressure
Altitude to the UAT. Pressure altitude is NOT on the serial line coming
out of the GTX330's "REMOTE" format of data. The GTX330 also has 2
serial IN and 2 serial OUT ports. On my install, the #1 pair is for my
GNS480's remote controlling of the transponder. My #2 IN is for the
altitude encoder. The #2 OUT is not used, but I used it set to "REMOTE"
to connect to the UAT, which is how the UAT gets the squawk info.
If you have a GTX327, it also has the REMOTE option, but, it only has 1
IN/OUT pair, and then a separate IN. This means that if you have a
GNS480, you'll have to split the REMOTE serial line OUT and use that
feed to the UAT. If you do not have a GNS480, you probably won't have
anything on Serial #1 anyway, so you can just turn on the OUT side to
"REMOTE" and use that. The #2 IN is used again for the encoder. The
GTX327 does not have any ARINC ports to provide Pressure Altitude to
the UAT. NavWorx does have the capability to add additional serial
ports to the box in the future, to provide for your encoder to feed the
UAT directly. Presently, the above interface that I'm talking about
uses the ENCODER IN RS-232 channel, and in config mode you can set it
to "Transponder Control" instead. So if you already were using the
encoder input, the tranponder control won't work for you right now.
That is why the ARINC input is so nice. NavWorx did tell me though that
they will add more serial channels in the next board revision, and also
they have an RS-422 channel that can be re-purposed as an RS-232 as
well, so 327
users are only a short step away from having both Encoder and
Transponder control in their systems. If you are a person with a
GTX327, it may be an opportunity for you to test the new interface.
At any rate, I thought I'd fill you in on this cool interface now. I've
participated in some of the testing of their new software revs. They
aren't paying me, and neither was
Chelton at any point, but I do get enjoyment out of participating in
software improvements. I think it benefits the whole group.
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