Forward Vision expects FAA approval to install its night vision camera systems on most Cessna high-wing aircraft models in May, company officials said April 24.
Forward Vision also is installing its infrared, enhanced vision systems on aerobatic performer Patty Wagstaff’s airplane, and she said the technology will come in handy for her wildlife survey trips in Africa.
“I fly a lot out west, and in Africa,” she said. “Sometimes there are elephants, giraffe, or ostrich on runways. [Forward Vision] is an amazing safety tool.”
Infrared cameras detect heat and a cockpit display shows pilots whether runways are obstructed by wildlife, vehicles, or other obstacles. The camera system also allows pilots to see flocks of birds in flight at night so that pilots can avoid collisions.
Unlike GPS-derived “synthetic vision,” Forward Vision’s enhanced vision system shows actual images of the outside world.
Jeff Welch, an American Champion Aircraft dealer in Michigan, said the company is experimenting with enhanced vision to detect wildfires before they grow into forest fires, and making night flight safer by providing images that cut through haze and show terrain.
Forward Vision is seeking FAA approval to install its $15,000 enhanced vision systems on all high-wing Cessna models except the P210 and Caravan.