The Electronic Flight Instrument System

Posted on March 22, 2021 linda strong aviation

While pilots have long relied on electromechanical flight decks and systems in the past, the Electronic Flight Instrument System (EFIS) has quickly grown as a standard for newer models. Rather than feature conventional gauges or dials, the display technology used for the EFIS relies on CRT and LCD screens to group important information together for pilots. As the EFIS continues to grow in use for aircraft, understanding its various components and flight display features can be beneficial to anyone who pilots aircraft or is learning how to fly.

Generally speaking, the primary components of the Electronic Flight Instrument System include the Primary Flight Display (PFD) and the Electronic Horizontal Situation Indicator (EHSI). The Primary Flight Display in particular is a device that serves to provide the pilot with various data garnered from instruments on a single display. While pilots operating older aircraft may be required to collect information on numerous flight characteristics from spread out gauges and instruments, the Primary Flight Display ensures that everything the pilot needs to safely conduct flight operations is located in a single place. Despite early versions of the PFD only combining information from the attitude indicator and flight director, many modern systems have introduced more information such as heading, altitude, airspeed, attitude, rate of climb, auto-throttle and autopilot engagement statuses, and much more.

For Primary Flight Displays that offer flight director modes, pilots may be provided with lateral guidance to maintain certain headings, tracks or approaches, as well as vertical guidance for climbing, descents, leveling off, approaching a land, and more. If the pilot is flying manually, the flight director can function to reduce the amount of work on behalf of the pilot, and engaging autopilot systems allows for the pilot to use the display for flight monitoring.

The Electronic Horizontal Situation Indicator, also known as the Navigation Display (ND), is the other major component of the EFIS that replaces conventional panel instruments and components. While the instruments radar replaced by the EHSI will often vary depending on the aircraft model, the data provided by the system will often include the heading flown, selected headings, bearing to navigation beacons, lateral deviations from set tracks, ground speed, aeronautical maps, weather information, and more.

As the main purpose of the EHSI is to provide the pilot with as much navigational information as possible, the device works alongside the flight management computer and a display controller to offer various navigational aids. By enabling the PLAN mode provided by the device, the pilot is presented with a fixed map displaying the input flight plan. With various navigational aids shown alongside the destination airport, the pilot can safely direct themselves from liftoff to landing. With the MAP mode, a more detailed moving background is presented, and navigational aids, airports, and waypoints may all be displayed. Beyond the PLAN and MAP mode, the EHSI will also provide VOR and ISL modes for an increased amount of information during navigation and landing procedures.

With the Electronic Flight Instrument System and its various offerings and capabilities, pilots are presented with a number of tools that allow them to conduct much safer and efficient flights. If you are ready to make the jump to electronic systems or simply need replacement parts, Aviation Sourcing Solutions has you covered with a multitude of offered items from numerous leading manufacturers. With our purchasing power and market expertise, we offer customers competitive pricing and lead-times for their ease of procurement. As you peruse our offered listings, you may request a quote for items you are interested in through the submission of an Instant RFQ form. Upon receiving your form, our team will quickly review and reach out to you in 15 minute or less to continue the quote process.

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