The Garmin G5000H glass cockpit for twin-turbine, medium-lift helicopters was announced at Heli-Expo in Dallas Feb. 12. It combines widescreen displays with voice command, 3-D spatial audio that helps a pilot differentiate among several communication sources, and touchscreen technology.
Pilots can control the system verbally, bringing it close to the futuristic Firefox jet in the 1982 Clint Eastwood movie, but there are no plans as yet for aircraft to have a neural connection to the pilot as depicted in the movie.
“We are able to leverage our many years of experience providing quality and reliable situational awareness capabilities like synthetic vision, terrain alerting and datalink weather, to design a system that specifically supports the unique needs and challenges of the helicopter operating environment,” said Carl Wolf, Garmin’s vice president of aviation sales and marketing. “With HSVT [helicopter synthetic vision technology] and HTAWS [helicopter terrain and warning system] plus innovative tools like touchscreen control, Telligence voice command and 3D audio, the G5000H promises to reduce workload and enhance the safety of each mission.”
The G5000H features high-resolution, wide-aspect-ratio primary flight displays (PFD) and multifunction displays (MFD). The system supports multiple display sizes and is scalable to support a large number of display and touchscreen controller configurations. The landscape-oriented displays have multi-pane capability that allows multiple pages to be viewed side by side on any of the displays. Therefore, pilots can simultaneously view their PFD, maps, charts, checklists and system synoptics, HTAWS, traffic alert and collision avoidance system (TCAS), flight planning, weather, or video input pages.
The touchscreen helicopter management system has the ability to control a variety of operations within the cockpit such as flight management system functions, lighting, environmental controls, electrical power distribution and hydraulic systems. It has a menu-driven interface with intuitive icons, audio and visual feedback, and animation so pilots know exactly how the system is responding to their input, and the growth-oriented architecture allows for future technologies to be accommodated via software updates.
HSVT seamlessly blends information about the helicopter’s position with topographic and helicopter-specific obstacle databases to create and display real-time 3-D images, and identifies obstacles that pose a threat.
HTAWS provides graphical and audible alerts of potential terrain and obstacle conflicts along the flight path.
Traffic systems offer TAS or TCAS I capability and combine Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) enhanced active and passive surveillance data to pinpoint specific traffic threats.
Global connectivity options include the ability to make and receive phone calls, send and receive text messages, and transmit critical data off the aircraft while on the ground or in flight.