Traffic Advisory System, Interpretation, Cirrus Perspective by Garmin

How do you interpret information from the Traffic Advisory System in the Cirrus Perspective by Garmin?

Cirrus Perspective PFD Traffic Inset, photo by wikiWings
Cirrus Perspective PFD Traffic Inset, photo credit wikiWings

When you hear the audible alert, Traffic! . . . Traffic! . . . use it as a prompt to look outside the cockpit.  You’ll hear an audible clock position, relative altitude and range quickly follow the Traffic alert, which helps you adjust your outside scan accordingly.  That’s the logical heads-up and look outside procedure.

But it is easy for the audible to become a queue that draws your eyes inside to check traffic on the display.  After an outside scan, you can quickly re-check position and distance by glancing at the MFD or PFD Inset.

Traffic advisories can be displayed on the MFD Nav page with ground-reference points or without base clutter on the MFD Traffic Map or PFD Inset.  Your aircraft orientation on the Traffic Map page is always heading up with surrounding TAS traffic relative to your current position. Traffic is displayed according to TCAS symbology which uses four (4) symbols.

Four Symbols of TCAS Symbology
  1. A white diamond with a black center denotes a Non-threat Advisory, and indicates the aircraft is at greater than 1,200 feet relative altitude or the distance is beyond 5 nm.
  2. An all white diamond denotes a Proximity Advisory, and indicates the aircraft is within 1,200 feet and is within 5 nm range, but is not considered a threat.
  3. A yellow circle denotes a Traffic Advisory (TA) or threat. Traffic Advisories alert you to potentially hazardous intruding aircraft, and indicates a closing rate, distance, and vertical separation that meet TA criteria.
  4. And, a Traffic Advisory, that is beyond the range you selected is shown as a half yellow/half gray circle, for example, you selected 2 nm ring but traffic at six miles is potential threat.
Cirrus Perspective Traffic Advisory System, photo by wikiWings
Cirrus Perspective Traffic Advisory System, photo credit wikiWings

All “Traffic Advisories,” i.e. yellow circles, identify intruder aircraft that are a potential threat and are accompanied by an audible heads-up position alert.

An Arrow up or down beside the TCAS symbol denotes climb (decent) greater than 500 feet per minute.  Relative altitude to your aircraft is shown by plus numbers on top or minus numbers below the TCAS symbol.  Add 2 zeros to the number for relative altitude to your aircraft, for example, +05 is equal to 500 feet above your aircraft’s relative altitude.

The TAS System interrogates surrounding transponders up to 56 times per second and updates the display accordingly.

The above information is a brief summary. You should refer to the proper pilot operating handbook (POH) and/or other original source manufacturer manuals for complete avionics operating instructions.

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