Astronics Corporation reports that its subsidiary Astronics Max-Viz is working with the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in a research project to study operational concepts for the use of enhanced flight vision systems (EFVS) in helicopters.
The study is designed to develop a basis for possible application of EFVS in helicopters flying into heliports. While EFVS rules exist for approaches to runways at airports, comparable regulations for EFVS do not exist for helicopters flying to onshore or offshore helipads at heliports, said the firm.
Astronics is providing one Max-Viz 1500 and one Max-Viz 2300 Enhanced Vision System (EVS) that the FAA will integrate into a Sikorsky S-76 helicopter test aircraft. The sensors will be used in flight tests and data acquisition for EVS and EFVS implementation.
Flight-testing is being conducted by the FAA’s William J. Hughes Technical Center, at the Atlantic City International Airport in New Jersey, said Astronics. The Max-Viz 1500 sensor will provide baseline testing, which will be followed with the installation of the Max-Viz 2300 for observation of LED lighting on the blended high resolution long wave infrared image. Flights are planned to occur in various weather and visibility conditions, day, night and twilight and via alternative approaches. Results of the study will be used by the FAA to evaluate the effectiveness of EFVS technology for helicopter flight safety and operational effectiveness.