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ACI Jet completes first of three Challenger 604 Pro Line Fusion installs
ACI Jet joins only a few MROs outside Bombardier's owned network of facilities that have completed a Pro Line Fusion installation on a Challenger 604. The deck was upgraded concurrently with a 192-month inspection.
The Challenger 604 flight deck after the Pro Line Fusion install.
Read this story in our April 2023 printed issue.

California-based aircraft MRO provider and Bombardier authorised service facility ACI Jet has completed the first of three scheduled Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion flight deck installations on Challenger 604 aircraft. The new flight deck, which features many of the same capabilities and technological improvements as Bombardier's later model Challenger aircraft, was upgraded concurrently with a planned 192-month inspection. After completion of the installation, the aircraft emerged 'squawk free'.

While this installation was not a first, ACI Jet joins the ranks of only a few MROs outside Bombardier's owned network of facilities that have completed a Pro Line Fusion installation on a Challenger 604 aircraft. ACI Jet is no stranger to firsts; the company has completed 'first article installations' for multiple avionics and inflight entertainment-related equipment over the last several years. The company also supports OEM supplemental type certificate (STC) development for new aircraft technologies and equipment.

With a deep understanding of the complexities and challenges associated with avionics upgrades of this size, the team is well-equipped to handle the unique requirements of projects of this magnitude. Working closely with Collins Aerospace as an authorised dealer and service centre, the team quickly addressed any questions or engineering clarification needed during the installation process.

“As with every first, we set reasonable timeline expectations and focused on clear communication with our customer throughout,” says ACI head of the avionics team Brian Ford. “Our relationship with Collins Aerospace and its support network is such that we were able to rely upon it for quick and accurate guidance when we encountered nuances that every major installation faces. Everyone pulled together to make it happen safely and accurately to meet our release target of 24 December, 2022 for the aircraft owner's flight schedule.”

To commemorate the accomplishment, the repair station produced the next in a series of mission patches, which is the unique way that ACI Jet rewards team members for major milestones. The mission patch for this installation features a transformer-like Challenger 604 aircraft character, not unlike how the aircraft looked during its 192-month inspection. Underfoot is an anvil, representing the weight reduced by upgrading to Pro Line Fusion. Three bees are buzzing around the aircraft making the fusion symbol with their flight paths. These busy bees represent three members of the avionics team who put in the most time on this project. Only the ACI Jet MRO team members on board on the aircraft's return to service date and select partners who helped to ensure the project's success receive the mission patch, an ACI tradition.

In the spirit of ACI Jet's 'fly like new' promise to customers, the Collins Pro Line Fusion can be a cost-effective method of modernising an aircraft rather than purchasing new. It provides a significant improvement in performance and reliability over older avionics systems. Collins Pro Line Fusion reduces the number of components and interfaces, which leads to improved reliability and reduced cost of operations and maintenance. By removing obsolete CRT displays and upgrading to 'glass' or touchscreen displays that replace dozens of buttons from various panels within the flight deck, the likelihood of a failed or failing display grounding an aircraft for lack of parts availability is dramatically reduced. The system offers advanced flight management capabilities, including real-time weather updates, increased navigation accuracy and improved communication options. Fusion is designed to be scalable and adaptable to future technology advancements, including push-to-load flight plan integration, ensuring that the aircraft remains at the cutting edge for years to come.

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