Is the way helicopter pilots operate in poor visibility about to change?
Tests that are planned in the coming months will determine whether this will happen.
A very advanced uncooled IR sensor developed by Elbit Systems for its passive flight system will be test flown before the end of the year.
The passive flight system is being developed for armed forces' utility helicopters. It will enable pilots to see the outside world in a 220° by 40° view in high resolution.
In bad weather, the system will show the contour of the ground to prevent the helicopter hitting the ground.
The system presents the outside world along with flight data and other relevant data through a very advanced pilot helmet.
According to the Israeli company, the system will include not only the advanced uncooled IR sensor, but additional ones. These will "build" a sufficient picture of the outside world to enable the pilots to function in a high degree of safety.
Elbit says that the system will solve a major problem facing helicopter pilots, "in the best way the technology allows at this point".
The development of the system is another effort by Elbit Systems to use all its technological resources to supply the pilots with the tools for safe operation under most of the conditions that they might face.