Aviation Communication & Surveillance Systems (ACSS), a joint L-3 Communications and Thales company, used last month’s Paris Air Show to introduce technology intended to warn pilots of runway and taxiway incursions.
Terrain awareness and warning system
The FAA last month granted Innovative Solutions & Support an STC for installation of the company’s 10-inch displays in the Pilatus PC-12. Like its previous PC-12 approval for installation of two 15-inch display units, IS&S’s latest STC includes TCAS, TAWS and RVSM compatibility.
Business Jet Technologies, the co-developer of the Quiet Technologies Stage 3 hush kit for the Gulfstream II/IIB, has launched avionics upgrade programs for the aircraft models based on the recent mandates for terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS) and reduced vertical separation minimums (RVSM) equipment.
A very sore-throated EMS pilot named Mark Graveline, who flies a Bell 206 equipped with the Chelton Flight Systems FlightLogic EFIS for Air Methods of San Antonio, talked about the cockpit system with HAI Convention News at the show yesterday.
Terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS) designed specifically for helicopters may soon be in hot demand, following the January 25 release of a report by the NTSB calling for the FAA to impose tighter safety guidelines for helicopter emergency medical service flights.
Over the last 10 years business aviation safety has improved immensely. During the same period, the entire aviation industry has been subject to a number of equipment, avionics and procedural requirements designed to reduce accidents.
At a briefing at February’s Heli-Expo in Dallas, members of the industry’s newly formed International Helicopter Safety Team briefed delegates on their strategy to drive an 80-percent improvement in rotorcraft safety statistics in the next 10 years. An FAA representative told AIN that a “one size fits all” or prescriptive approach to setting new standards would not work.
Talk about making inroads. The FlightLogic synthetic-vision EFIS from Chelton Flight Systems has received STC approvals in several helicopter models recently, and no fewer than eight of the helicopters on display at February’s Heli-Expo in Dallas were fitted with the system.
The NTSB has recommended to the FAA that all U.S.-registered turbine helicopters certified to carry at least six passengers be required to have terrain awareness and warning systems (TAWS). The recommendation stems from the investigation of the crash of an Era Aviation Sikorsky S-76++ in the Gulf of Mexico, which killed all 10 people on board and destroyed the helicopter.
In response to recommendations of the joint industry/ government International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST), MD Helicopters will include as standard equipment on all its aircraft wire-strike protection systems, cockpit voice and video recorders, health and usage monitoring systems and terrain awareness warning systems starting next year.