£250 CAA rebate
If you don’t already know, the CAA is offering a 50% (to a maximum of £250) rebate on portable, electronic conspicuity devices. Apparently, they have made funding available (although limited, naturally) to encourage wider adoption of EC devices across General Aviation and unmanned aircraft systems.
This offer is only valid on purchases made between 5th October 2020 until 31st March 2021. Or until the available funding runs out. The CAA estimate around 10,000 units to be covered by their funding. How far through that they are is hard to tell, but I do know both Transair and Flightstore are out of stock of the very popular SkyEcho 2, so it must be pretty popular.
What devices are available?
The most popular device is the SkyEcho 2. A very light, very portable device that you can take with you from aircraft to aircraft and it works directly with popular navigation apps such as SkyDemon, ForeFlight, EasyVFR, and AirMate. It has FLARM (a play on ‘flight alarm’) is a traffic awareness and collision avoidance technology for light aircraft and GA.
You can pick up the SkyEcho 2 for around £499 (remember the 50% rebate!) from suppliers such as:
Mendelssohn Pilot Supplies also provide an array of other devices some of which are also available as part of the CAA rebate. Other devices which are available are:
Do I actually need one?
If you fly AirBourne Aviation C42s
Arguably not. However, note that two aircraft do not have in-built ADS-B functionality and therefore if those aircraft with a transponder are otherwise unavailable, having this device means that you can take ADS-B functionality with you.
If you fly other aircraft
If your regular club or group aircraft has a fully functioning ADS-B solution then perhaps £250 could be spent better elsewhere. However, if you fly multiple aircraft, gliders, or other light aircraft, I would say this is getting pretty essential, in my humble opinion. And with the CAA offering a 50% rebate, why not grab it?