Remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) manufacturer General Atomics says it has successfully tested sense-and-avoid architecture and self-separation functionality that could be the key to keeping piloted aircraft and RPAs apart in the air. The recent test marked the first time the technology has functioned as a true “system of systems” to detect every class of aircraft equipage, and it paves the way for a due regard capability, that ability to avoid aircraft, objects and weather.
Rockwell Collins’s next-generation TTR-2100 traffic alert and collision avoidance system (Tcas II) for transport aircraft has achieved FAA certification. The new system, which provides NextGen traffic surveillance in a lighter and more capable unit, is available for Boeing aircraft as a forward-fit and retrofit solution. Airbus and other aircraft types will follow soon. Both the TTR-2100 and the soon-to-be certified TTR-4100 for helicopters and business and regional aircraft meet the emerging requirements of NextGen airspace.
Russian Helicopters is developing a “comprehensive avionics system” for situational awareness, autopilot landing and collision avoidance. It will be installed on all new Russian-made helicopters starting in 2015. The new “intelligent” system will inform pilots about hazards in the landing area. It will even enable the aircraft to hover above a given point and land automatically.
Sources at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego released the names of the seven soldiers killed in last week’s midair collision under clear night skies between an AH-1W “Cobra” and an UH-1Y “Huey.” A spokesman for the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing at Miramar said the investigation is expected to take months and refused to comment on any possible causes for the collision.
On December 16 last year, the European Commission adopted a new regulation mandating Change 7.1 software for airborne collision avoidance systems (Acas II) used in aircraft operating in European airspace. The new regulation applies to turbine-powered aircraft with maximum takeoff weights of more than 5,700 kg (12,566 pounds) or aircraft authorized to carry more than 19 passengers.
Offshore operator Bristow’s Sikorsky S-92s have started flying in the North Sea with a second-generation traffic alert collision avoidance system (Tcas2). The first of seven medium twins to be equipped entered service in August, following EASA approval. The company had been studying S-92 Tcas2 since 2008, when it started operating the in-house-developed system on a Eurocopter Super Puma.
Goodrich Corp. has announced several innovations selected as standard or optional equipment by various corporate aircraft OEMs.
Garrett Aviation has completed installation of the first Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 Continuum retrofit avionics system in a Falcon 20. Designed to extend the lives of aging business jets, the package features active-matrix LCD adaptive flight displays that support advanced capabilities for terrain awareness, enhanced navigation maps, uplinked graphic weather and other functions.