22 Jul 2017

ForeFlight’s Scout Adds Low-cost ADS-B IN Option

On the eve of EAA AirVenture 2017, ForeFlight has released what will likely be a fast-selling item at the annual general aviation extravaganza: the $199 Scout ADS-B IN receiver. While ForeFlight will be selling Scout directly from its Oshkosh booth, normal distribution will be via Amazon.

Scout is manufactured by uAvionix, and it is designed to integrate with the ForeFlight Mobile EFB app. It works only with ForeFlight, and can accept over-the-air firmware upgrades using the ForeFlight app. Scout offers dual-band ADS-B IN, which means that it can receive traffic information from aircraft equipped with ADS-B OUT systems transmitting on both the 978 and 1090 MHz ADS-B frequencies.

Scout connects to iOS devices via Wi-Fi, and it supports up to four devices. It also allows connected tablets or phones to share flight routes using ForeFlight’s Cockpit Sharing.

Unlike more expensive ADS-B receivers, Scout does not include GPS, AHRS sensors or a barometric sensor, nor does it have the ability to record Track Logs. It is also not fitted with a battery, which means that it requires an external five-volt power supply, either from a portable battery or USB port installed in the aircraft.

The information available on Scout includes free FAA-provided FIS-B weather and TIS-B traffic. The weather information on the Flight Information Services-Broadcast (FIS-B) network includes animated regional and Conus Nexrad, Metars, TAFs, Airmets/Sigmets, Pireps, winds and temperatures aloft, TFRs, Notams and special-use airspace information updates.

Traffic Information Services-Broadcast (TIS-B) is display of rebroadcast traffic derived from the FAA ATC datafeed; however this is not fully functional unless the airplane equipped with ADS-B IN (such as Scout) is also ADS-B OUT-equipped.

Scout is slightly larger than a USB drive, weighs 17 grams and comes in a carrying case, which includes the USB power cord and two small suction cups (one for the Scout unit and a second cup that attaches to the cord).

With the release of Scout, ForeFlight is clearly targeting the budget-conscious pilot, someone who may be willing to build a low-cost do-it-yourself Stratux ADS-B IN receiver, which is a Raspberry Pi-based system that can be made for not much more than $100. “The price point makes it more accessible,” a ForeFlight spokeswoman told AIN, “and it gives them technology to make flying safer.”

Source : | The Convention News Company, Inc.

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