At the Corporate Aviation Safety Seminar presented by the NBAA and Flight Safety Foundation, Rockwell Collins introduced a new head-up guidance system, the HGS-3500, which is intended for light to midsize business airplanes equipped with the company’s Pro Line Fusion flight deck. It’s the first time that a head-up guidance system will be available to pilots of small jets. Formerly the size of the installation restricted it to larger airplanes, but Collins says that its use of new technology has allowed it to migrate the technology downward, where it will arguably do more good.
Smaller jets are not only more numerous than large cabin models, but they tend to frequent cozier runways too. The feat of shrinking the technology was accomplished by clever use of integration and new optical imaging technologies. As opposed to HUD technologies (click here for our view of the safety advantages of HUD technology) that rely on projecting the image onto the glass, the HGS-3500 injects the image, sending it through the top of the flat-plate glass surface and creating a conformal view (what you see is what’s out there) of the world, in addition to a wide variety of guidance symbology, including enhanced flight path marker and all information needed for primary control. The system also includes alerts for traffic, wind shear, unusual attitudes and tail strikes.