Rockwell Collins to develop DVEPS for US Army
Rockwell Collins will develop the Degraded Visual Environment Pilotage System (DVEPS) for the US Army’s Special Operations Aviation Regiment (SOAR) helicopters. The company was awarded the first of three phrases for the development programme, which aims to develop and qualify a DVE solution that can be fielded by 2018.
The DVEPS solution is fully compatible with the existing Common Avionics Architecture System featured on the US Army’s MH-47G and MH-60M helicopters, as well as many other tactical helicopter avionics systems and will assist pilots to safely fly in degraded visual environments. In addition, the DVEPS system will help improve visual cues enabling pilots to maintain correct attitude and speeds during landing in degraded visual environments.
Troy Brunk, vice president and general manager of Airborne Solutions, Rockwell Collins, said: ‘This programme will give pilots something they’ve never had before – the ability to see through DVE obscurants, such as dust, fog, and snow and successfully avoid hazards in the landing zone. Our synthetic vision and sensor fusion technology will provide SOAR pilots with enhanced pilotage capabilities, resulting in safer operations and increased probability of mission success and aircraft survivability.’
A key component of the DVEPS solution is Rockwell Collins’ Synthetic Vision Avionics Backbone (SVAB) system, which has been successfully demonstrated with DARPA on its Multi-Function Radio Frequency programme. The SVAB system utilises advanced data processing algorithms to smartly fuse 3D synthetic vision-based imagery with lightweight DVE sensors, such as millimeter wave radar or LIDAR. The fused 3D imagery will be utilised in the DVEPS programme, along with improved pilotage symbology to provide an unprecedented view of the operational environment and flight guidance for enroute, approach, and hover phases of flight.
‘Our approach is to offer a scalable system that will allow affordable reuse by other DoD rotorcraft operators,’ Brunk added.
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