Elbit Systems will be at Heli-Expo exhibiting its ski-goggle-shaped Skylens and helmet-mounted Skyvis wearable head-up displays. These will be able to merge flight symbology with images from an enhanced vision system (EVS) and a synthetic vision system (SVS). Certification is slated for late 2016.
"We want to help pilots see in bad visibility, both for safety and operational effectiveness,” said Dror Yahav, vice president of commercial avionics. These capabilities could eventually yield credits for lower landing minimums, too. While Skylens and Skyvis will mainly be available as part of an aircraft's avionics package, Elbit also hopes to be able to offer the devices as a retrofit.
Both wearable devices provide head-up-display-style symbology, conformal synthetic vision and enhanced vision from a multispectral camera. And both feature a line-of-sight tracker.
The symbology is always displayed, but the pilot can choose whether SVS, EVS or a combination of both (combined vision system, or CVS) appears as well. The Skylens device will first be certified on an unnamed fixed-wing application. The symbology will be slightly different for fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, Yahav explained.
Skylens weighs one pound, according to Yahav, and the weight is spread out so that wearing it remains comfortable for the pilot. The wearable device is supposed to be used mostly for takeoff and landing.
Another product that Elbit is showcasing here at Heli-Expo is HeliEVS, a multispectral EVS that is viewable on a head-down display. “EVS is better than SVS for helicopters,” he explained, “for example [when] flying to offshore rigs that can change [their] position and where antennas may be moved.” Synthetic vision is derived from a database and thus may not reflect a recently moved oil platform. He added that HeliEVS is “highly cost-effective.”
Pilot training for the Elbit wearable devices is expected to involve three hours in a simulator and a few approaches. Civil aviation authorities, however, still have to approve the training syllabus.