The skies just got safer.
Honeywell, one of the largest manufacturers of avionics equipment, has developed a new technology to help pilots see through bad weather conditions. The technology uses a combination of infrared cameras and an extensive ground mapping database to create an image overlay on the pilot's heads-up display.
Honeywell has already tested the new tech and has flown more than 25 hours with it, testing its effectiveness. The new system has yet to get the blessing of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), but they expect that it will be soon widely accepted.
The system has been in development for several years now, and featured a preview of the technology on television news channels earlier this year. Check out the embedded video for a sample.
In an interview with Smart Planet's Sumi Das, Honeywell Chief Test Pilot Jary Engels said that in this demonstration that the 3- to 5- second gain that the infrared imaging gave him over the actual view was extremely important. Coupling this with the ground mapping gives pilots a great advantage over traditional instrument landing systems.
Once commercial carriers adopt Honeywell's technology, flyers will see shorter delays due to bad weather, and can feel safer since pilots now have a strong increase in visibility.