4 Key Technologies that Can Make a Helicopter Safer

With the development and certification of a stability augmentation system (or autopilot device) for light helicopters, the flight stability will increase, and pilots will be able to mitigate the loss of control issues

Fremont, CA: Helicopters are one of the most comfortably accessible aerial vehicles. They are used across a variety of missions by military departments and even by emergency services. The ability to take off and land without a runway makes it possible for them to access the most remote and interior areas, sometimes inaccessible by road. Helicopters are also widely used by high profile politicians on official travels. The tourism industry also leverages these aerial vehicles, packaging them as helicopter tours around cities.

However, helicopters are also highly prone to accidents. In most cases, the structure of the vehicle and lack of adequate safety features leads to fatalities of passengers and pilots in the case of a crash. After analyzing multiple accidents and crash reports, the U.S. Helicopter Safety Team has come up with four flight technologies that can be implemented to reduce the crash cases among helicopters.

Autopilot for Light Helicopters

At present, helicopters under the lightweight segment have unstable characteristics that can prove to be challenging and demanding for a pilot. With the development and certification of a stability augmentation system (or autopilot device) for light helicopters, the flight stability will increase, and pilots will be able to mitigate the loss of control issues. The equipment currently used in the aviation industry can be altered to make it compatible with light helicopters and can act as an effective safety tool during low visibility, low ceiling and unintended IMC conditions.

Flight Data Monitoring Equipment

The different devices used for monitoring helicopter flight data, including audio/video recording devices, have the ability to collect data on regular and atypical operations. Since 2009, the majority of fatal accidents had insufficient data surrounding details of the state of the helicopter at the time of the event. Due to the lack of adequate information, proactive interventions cannot be put in place before an incident occurs. With flight data monitoring information in place, hazardous behaviour can be identified, and there is an opportunity to break the accident chain before it results in fatalities.

Full Authority Idle Protection Devices

The full authority idle control devices equip a helicopter with significant safety features. This technology reduces the risk of engine failure in a piston helicopter. The device ensures that the engine keeps running at a nominal throttle position even when the pilot rapidly decelerates the chopper. The existing technology can be adapted for the development of this device.

Enhanced Vision Technology

Night vision goggles, synthetic vision systems, and combined vision systems are technologies that are readily available today. These enable pilots to see clearly when the vision is poor. It helps them in recognizing and preventing unplanned flight into degraded visibility conditions due to weather. Night vision goggles also provide added safety during night flight times. With these advanced tools, pilots will be able to make more informed and proactive decisions related to visibility. However, it must be kept in mind that these enhanced vision technologies should not be used to encourage pilots to fly during poor visibility and adverse weather conditions as it may lead to undesired events.

Check This Out:- Top Aerospace Solution Companies

Weekly Brief