Rockwell Collins Releases HGS Flight HUD Trainer

 - January 2, 2013, 4:35 AM
The Rockwell Collins HGS Flight iPad app introduces pilots to head-up display operation in a fun and challenging way.

The Rockwell Collins HGS Flight app for the iPad may seem like a game, but spend enough time with it and you’ll soon come to appreciate the benefits of a head-up display (HUD) and learn about HUD symbology and operation.

HGS Trainer works on all iPad models and is a free download. The game offers players a choice between flying approaches with HUD symbology and a throttle control or starting out in the learning mode, then progressing to higher levels. The app also includes information about Rockwell Collins Head-up Guidance HUD technology and links to more information about HUDs and regulatory material.

In the “Career” mode, the first level starts with the basics of HUD flight, a flight director cue that the player must align with the flight-path vector. Tilt the iPad to match the cue to the vector, and the flight path to the touchdown point on the runway is assured. Subsequent levels add more HUD symbology. And the “Challenge” mode allows the player to select day/night, wind, weather and HUD synthetic vision (a feature available on new Rockwell Collins HUDs).

Flying the HGS Flight app is challenging and it gives players a good idea of how HUDs work and what they look like in flight. The symbology on the app is basic and leaves out a lot of the elements found on a real HUD such as course and nav guidance, radar altitude, angle of attack, vertical speed and more. But the acceleration cue and tape work just like a real HUD. And flying a real HUD, after handling the highly sensitive HGS Flight on the iPad, should be a breeze.


I saw the press release for this app a few weeks ago. As both a pilot and app developer, I was eager to try it out. I agree, it's a good tool to demonstrate the HGS HUD, but WOW does it fail in a realistic portrayal of the landing. So much work was done on this app, but I feel shortcuts were taken in the last 4-5 seconds of flight.

I have to agree with Davis. I found that my landings could be the equivalent of crashes and I'd still get credit.

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