Israeli electronics specialist Elbit Systems is presenting a wide range of its pilot situation awareness capabilities that can be applied to civil and military uses. Several of them are being demonstrated “live” here at Farnborough (Hall 1 Stand C14).
Synthetic vision system
“I enter this airshow period feeling much more confident,” said Rockwell Collins CEO and president Kelly Ortberg on the eve of this year’s Farnborough International Airshow. Military budgets are stabilizing, he added, “and this provides much more certainly about what programs are going to be funded going forward.”
The FAA recently issued an STC for the Astronics Max-Viz 1500 enhanced vision system (EVS) on Pilatus PC-12s equipped with video-capable multifunction displays. The STC kit includes the Max-Viz 1500 sensor, power supply and unpainted fairing; the STC data package costs $80,000 plus labor. Installation is said to take between 16 and 30 hours, depending on the airplane. According to the company, operators of legacy PC-12s also get a monitor as part of the STC kit at no additional cost. The price does not include any hardware or software upgrades needed to display video on existing avionics.
Rockwell Collins has received FAA certification for its Pro Line 21 integrated display system (IDS) retrofit solution for Pro Line II-equipped Hawker 800As. The retrofit brings Hawker 800 owners modern flight deck capabilities with the same displays found on the Hawker 900XP and 850XP.
The FAA recently issued an STC for the Astronics Max-Viz 1500 enhanced vision system (EVS) on Pilatus PC-12s equipped with video-capable multifunction displays. The system permits pilots to see more clearly at night and up to eight to 10 times farther than the unaided human eye in many obscured visibility conditions.
Dassault’s Falcon 5X program is progressing on time for a maiden flight in the first half of 2015. Late in April, AIN was invited to see the first wing at Dassault’s Bordeaux Martignas factory and the first complete fuselage at the manufacturer’s Biarritz production facility. The aircraft will complete assembly and begin ground tests this summer.
In January, Honeywell opened the doors of its advanced-technology facility in Deer Valley, Ariz., and shared details of what its engineers and scientists are exploring for possible use in future aircraft programs. These included tests on touchscreen controls, gesture-based avionics manipulation, haptic feedback devices, voice controls and even transcranial neural sensing.
Few of these human-machine interfaces will appear in any cockpits soon, but Honeywell’s experts are exploring new avenues toward making aircraft safer and more efficient.
German light-sport manufacturer Flight Design (Booth #MD-027) updated Sun ’n’ Fun show attendees on the progress of its four-place C4 airframe, as well as announced expansion plans for manufacturing and assembly facilities in Asia and the U.S.
The company, which has delivered more than 2,000 aircraft around the world over the past 25 years has worked with Garmin to develop its own Flight Design Garmin Vision Touch avionics for the new C4, its first four-place aircraft, expected to cost $250,000, which is currently in testing.
Garmin’s G3X glass display is now available in a touchscreen version, the GDU 465 G3X Touch, designed for the experimental and light sport aircraft markets. The 10.6-inch GDU 465, like Garmin’s GTC 570 touchscreen controllers in G2000 through G5000 cockpits, employs infrared touchscreen technology. G3X Touch was designed by Garmin’s Team X experimental engineering team, a group of pilots and homebuilders.
Aspen Avionics is extending its reach further into the general aviation market with a new VFR version of its primary flight display (PFD) glass panel retrofit product. Retailing for $4,995 (plus installation), the VFR 1000 PFD offers owners of older aircraft a way to add a single glass panel that replaces the traditional six-pack instruments, then later add additional capabilities, which are available as software upgrades. “This is tailored for the VFR pilot,” said John Uczekaj, Aspen president and CEO.
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