bd95r

New Aspen E5 - In-Flight Crash and Reset

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Earlier this year I took the plunge and did an avionics upgrade that included a new avidyne ifd440 and a new Aspen E5.

Unfortunately, since then my new Aspen E5 has been performing poorly in the 9 months since installation. I recently found and reached out to another Aspen E5 customer that is going through similar problems with his new Aspen E5....I am looking to see if other Aspen E5 customers are experiencing similar issues to help find the root cause.

While Aspen has been responsive in trying to resolve the issue I will describe below.....I am posting here to try and get the word out to see if others are experiencing the same problems with the Aspen E5 to see if the community can shed some more light on what is going on with the Aspen E5.

**** So, here goes ::::: I'm now on my 3rd Aspen E5 unit since Feb 2019.

I've had 3 in-flight E5 restarts ( 1 on each E5 )...the E5 just goes blank and reset as if it was normal:

1st reset) On final approach to rwy in Feb - approach power/RPM, gear going down:::E5 replaced by Aspen in Mar

2nd reset) In cruise at ~8k ft in Sept - cruise power/RPM:::E5 replaced again by Aspen + New (blue) shielded RSM cable Nov - cable length less than 12 feet.

3rd reset) On departure at ~5k ft in Dec - high power/RPM:::Logs downloaded and sent to Aspen. Logs seem clean to me but Aspen has yet to review and make a root cause determination

Some background info:
- I've flown about 80 hours since original E5 install
- E5 is just connected to an ifd440 and an Stec-30 via the Aspen ACU
- I have the original 910-00003-002 RSM (E5/Top Mount) installed
- I get no indication on anything in the plane that a reset is pending...ie, dim lights, GPS error, etc
- Seems that there is no correlation in the events for the in-flight reset
- I reviewed the logs sent to Aspen....I can see nothing other than what appear to be normal bootups
- I have looked at the disgnotics page and see nothing out of what I would expect to be normal
- E5 MAP software was 2.10 during all of this
- E5 has a backup battery but never "goes to battery", ie like in a loss of power situation
- There is no ADSB-In info being fed into the system...I use a portable stratus and ipad/foreflight for weather/traffic.

If anyone has any ideas or has experienced any E5 issues, please feel free to reply.

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*Members that donate $10 or more do not see advertisements*

Congrats on your first post, 95r.

You picked an interesting level of pain threshold to get started...  :)

We have many Aspen users around here...

Quite a few have been discussing the upgrade schedules of their E5s...

There has been one discussion of an Aspen challenge lately...

I don’t recall what the challenge particulars were... a search may reveal it...

Stand by and see who else stops in... come back often and check in...

Best regards,

-a-

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Thanks for the welcome carusoam...yes, looking back it has been painful but as I was going through it I really believed it was "fixed" each time a replacement came in.

I will continue to look for aspen related threads and hopefully someone can help shed some light on this.

 

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I had an E5 installed into my E model back at annual in May. First long xc I was on after install was with my IFR instructor. The E5 crashed and reset on me in flight about 5 hrs I to that trip. I brought it to my installer and said take it back, give me the G5s for redundancy. He laughed, pulled some logs and it went nowhere. I'll probably sell it at a loss and install dual G5s on my dime when the GFC500 is available for short bodies.

 

I've put probably 80 ish hrs on it since that first crash and it's been just fine. Sad to see it appears to be a systemic issue.

 

Edit, if it matters mine is also paired to an ifd440

 

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That is interesting...so far, I've been able to find 4 Aspen E5 customers with this issue....all seem to have ifd440s

Not saying that is it but its just interesting.

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That is interesting...so far, I've been able to find 4 Aspen E5 customers with this issue....all seem to have ifd440s

Not saying that is it but its just interesting.

My guess is most people with Garmin navigators will install the G5s, or the g3x, etc. The ifd and aspen combo is likely what the anti G crowd goes for.

 

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I think @LANCECASPER has the ifd units and max displays. I’m curious what 440 software version everyone is running (especially the units that have reset in flight). I can’t believe it’s a hardware problem... sounds more like a software incompatibility issue. Really excited about the new hsi E5 upgrade. 

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That is interesting...so far, I've been able to find 4 Aspen E5 customers with this issue....all seem to have ifd440s
Not saying that is it but its just interesting.


Have you negotiated with them to upgrade you to a PFD 1000? With competition from the G5, I would think they would be motivated to keep you happy. I’ve been flying behind an Aspen 2000 since 2012 that has been absolutely trouble free. Wish I could say the same about my GTN 650.

I recently upgraded to the Max version. I believe it shares the same processor as the E5. Be watching for an update from you. Good luck.





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Have you negotiated with them to upgrade you to a PFD 1000? With competition from the G5, I would think they would be motivated to keep you happy. I’ve been flying behind an Aspen 2000 since 2012 that has been absolutely trouble free. Wish I could say the same about my GTN 650.

 

I recently upgraded to the Max version. I believe it shares the same processor as the E5. Be watching for an update from you. Good luck.

 

 

 

 

 

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If he removed the vac system as I did, and the E5 allows, the single max wouldn't qualify without a backup, right? I'd go for it otherwise TBH. Probably even would spring for a mfd1000 max to make it legal.

 

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Just now, Marauder said:


Have you negotiated with them to upgrade you to a PFD 1000? With competition from the G5, I would think they would be motivated to keep you happy. I’ve been flying behind an Aspen 2000 since 2012 that has been absolutely trouble free. Wish I could say the same about my GTN 650.
 

 

I think there were at least a few people that had similar reset issues with the max. As I recall some of them had older software on the ea100 unit that might have caused the issue. However, I’d be curious what gps was installed. 

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I did remove the VAC system as NJMac mentioned....I don't have the ea100 but I do have the ACU.

Without having a backup AI in my panel, I won't fly IMC more than going thru a layer. I don't trust it. And that's sad for a $7k (installed) piece

 

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yep...same here....puts a real crimp on flying.  I'm not giving up though and looking to get this fixed....Aspen has been in this business a long time and I would expect that they will be able to figure it out.

On a side note....I am looking real hard at the uAvionix AV-30 as a backup once it gets certified.

 

Edited by bd95r
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1 minute ago, NJMac said:

Without having a backup AI in my panel, I won't fly IMC more than going thru a layer. I don't trust it. And that's sad for a $7k (installed) piece

I thought you purchased a lifesaver from the reaper?  That would make a perfect replacement for your turn coordinator. 

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I thought you purchased a lifesaver from the reaper?  That would make a perfect replacement for your turn coordinator. 
No, I never made that happen. My installer talked me out of it.

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11 hours ago, bd95r said:

If anyone has any ideas or has experienced any E5 issues, please feel free to reply. 

@bd95r as you may already know the FAA has issued an AD on Aspen boxes:

https://www.bonanza.org/news/aspen-flight-display-ad/jan-2019/aspen-flight-display-ad/

“SAIB SW-18-31 was issued to notify the public that an unsafe condition may exist. Since we issued SAIB SW-18-31, additional analysis of the reports of uncommanded resets and the nature of the possible unsafe condition were evaluated, and we have determined that a more urgent safety need requiring AD action is necessary. As a result, we are adopting this AD for certain Aspen EFD1000 PFD, EFD1000 MFD, EFD1000 EBD, and EFD500 MFD units installed on various airplanes. The unsafe condition, if not addressed, could result in loss of control of the airplane in Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC) or at night.”

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His unit is a E5, not anything applicable to said AD.

He doesn't have traffic on his Aspen, making it doubly not applicable.

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1 hour ago, tmo said:

His unit is a E5, not anything applicable to said AD.

He doesn't have traffic on his Aspen, making it doubly not applicable.

He has an E5 showing similar unsafe behavior, i.e. uncommanded resets. I think it’s applicable and related. The fact that now it’s a different box than what’s on the AD illustrates that Aspen has very serious systemic issues.

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Even if the AD is explicitly about ADS-B traffic which the OP specifically listed as not even being fed into the system?

Additionally, with the replacement units, he would have gotten the newest firmware, surely, not something falling under an AD that was issued almost a year ago.

But sure, no harm in double checking that the SW version is current and that there really isn't any traffic info being fed to the unit.  I just don't see it as applicable, given the input data from the first post.  But perhaps it is for others who were having issues,

Edited by tmo
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27 minutes ago, tmo said:

Even if the AD is explicitly about ADS-B traffic which the OP specifically listed as not even being fed into the system?

Additionally, with the replacement units, he would have gotten the newest firmware, surely, not something falling under an AD that was issued almost a year ago.

But sure, no harm in double checking that the SW version is current and that there really isn't any traffic info being fed to the unit.  I just don't see it as applicable, given the input data from the first post.  But perhaps it is for others who were having issues,

None of this seems to matter tho.  There are still a disproportionate number of failures of Aspen boxes and EA100 adapters to warrant the FAA to issue an AD.  I won’t turn this into a “this is better than that”, but one fact remains true:  Rarely - if ever - does a G500/GADxx product have anywhere near these issues; nor do they fail to display anything for which they were intended.  Appreciate this community is heavily slanted toward Aspen products, but you can’t ignore or dispute the Aspen high failure rate.

For those in this group with them installed, I sincerely hope no one else is impacted; and for those who are or have been, that a solution is found...for your safety and peace of mind, if nothing else.

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55 minutes ago, StevenL757 said:

None of this seems to matter tho.  There are still a disproportionate number of failures of Aspen boxes and EA100 adapters to warrant the FAA to issue an AD.  I won’t turn this into a “this is better than that”, but one fact remains true:  Rarely - if ever - does a G500/GADxx product have anywhere near these issues; nor do they fail to display anything for which they were intended.  Appreciate this community is heavily slanted toward Aspen products, but you can’t ignore or dispute the Aspen high failure rate.

For those in this group with them installed, I sincerely hope no one else is impacted; and for those who are or have been, that a solution is found...for your safety and peace of mind, if nothing else.

I do think part of the reason Garmin has fewer failures is the closed architecture that allows them to control what is interfaced with the pfd’s. I’m pretty sure the ea100 works with many older AP systems that the GAD units are not certified for. I also remember a software conflict being a problem for IFD driven g500’s.

But I do agree that hardware failures are prevalent. I wonder how many g500 unit vs individual aspen screens have been sold?

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If he removed the vac system as I did, and the E5 allows, the single max wouldn't qualify without a backup, right? I'd go for it otherwise TBH. Probably even would spring for a mfd1000 max to make it legal.  
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I forgot the E5 was a stand-alone. Get them to give you an ESI-500 as a backup. They sell the L-3 products.


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