Four-year-old Max-Viz of Gig Harbor, Wash. (Booth No. 1577), is here at Heli-Expo promoting its EVS-1000 enhanced-vision system for helicopters.
Using the same infrared technology as forward-looking infrared systems applied in surveillance-type operations, the EVS-1000 provides real-time black-and-white images of actual terrain during poor visibility conditions, such as darkness, light fog, haze, snow and rain. However, the nose-mounted, wide-angle Max-Viz systems are intended as a visual aid for pilots rather than for the surveillance roles for which the adjustable and movable FLIRs are used on law enforcement, rescue and military aircraft.
According to Chuck Crompton, Max-Viz marketing director, operators can use enhanced-vision systems in concert with night-vision goggles (NVGs) or by themselves, depending on the mission. One advantage Max-Viz systems have over NVGs is that they do not require FAA certification of the flight crews and recurrent training. The equipment cost for the two systems is about the same.
Max-Viz EVS-1000 systems are currently installed on the Agusta A109A, Bell 212 and 214, Eurocopter EC 135 and 145 and AS 355 and Sikorsky S-76 A/B/C/D. STCs are pending on the Bell 206 and 407.