Australian company Swan International has completed ground tests of a laser-based windshear detection system for business and general aviation aircraft and is in talks with potential partners to allow it to progress to product development and certification.

Swan's system uses an eye-safe laser rather than the traditional weather radar, which means it has a lower power requirement, gives a clear response and results in a smaller and lower-cost system more suitable for business and general aviation aircraft.

The prototype system has been undergoing ground testing since 2003 and late last year flight tests were conducted from Sydney's Bankstown airport in conjunction with the University of New South Wales on a Beechcraft Duchess.

Swan International chief executive Brian McGuire reports good results from the flight tests. Further flight tests are being planned in a research project to observe atmospheric pollution over Sydney, he says. McGuire is in talks with potential US and European partners.

Source: Flight International