BAE touts Q-HUD for light business jets

 - October 6, 2008, 2:21 PM

BAE Systems (Booth No. 1881) is aiming its new compact and lightweight head-up display, Q-HUD, at a wide market that includes light jets. BAE claims that the new system is 50 percent lighter, significantly less costly, more reliable, generates less heat, and provides pilots with more headroom, a greater range of view and a range of head motion that is 15 times greater than conventional HUDs.

BAE is hoping to have the new system certified by 2010 and is currently soliciting a launch customer.

Q-HUD uses holographic wave guide technology that actually injects the light image into the display glass, eliminating the need for a projection-lens configuration. It also makes use of optics pioneered on the company’s helmet-mounted Q-Sight displays developed for the military.

The design of the Q-HUD’s optics allows for a significantly larger field of pilot head movement while viewing the HUD. The system can also display synthetic-vision imagery and terrain data. BAE said Q-HUD is more reliable than traditional systems, with a mean time between failure rate of 20,000 hours.

“What we have with Q-HUD is the ability to access those smaller and regional jets,” said Paul Childs, BAE Systems business development manager, electronics, intelligent and support. “Traditional HUD units are quite deep. This unit has a much smaller profile.”

Childs said he thinks the market for Q-HUD is new aircraft priced at $5 million and up. “That is a good figure to use,” he said. “From an envelope and a price perspective, that is a number we want to do. A lot of it is just sitting with the OEM, getting their Catia data and showing them how we can repackage Q-HUD in a smaller package. Bombardier, Dassault and Embraer already have it [HUD] on their midsize and above aircraft. They’d love to get it on their smaller ones,” Childs said.