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MEMS gyro improves helicopter flight safety

Posted: 31 May 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:MEMS? gyroscope? flight safety solution? sensor?

ALERTS Vision 1000

Analog Devices Inc. is providing its high-performance iMEMS gyroscope technology for a new aircraft flight safety and training tool developed by Appareo Systems, light weight flight data recorders and 3D flight analysis software company.

In an international push to improve helicopter safety, the ALERTS (Aircraft Logging and Event Recording for Training and Safety) Vision 1000 flight data monitoring solution was designed in partnership with Eurocopter, a division of EADS, a helicopter manufacturer serving the civil and parapublic market. Among Appareo's clients are companies working in the oil and natural gas industries, Helicopter Emergency Medical Services operators, and the United States military, all of whom benefit from significantly improved flight data monitoring.

"The ability to track, record and analyze the exact pitch, roll and yaw of the aircraft provides operators with an incredibly valuable tool to improve the flying performance of student pilots and experienced aviators alike," said Robert Weinmann, embedded systems director for Appareo Systems. "Analog Devices' iMEMS gyroscope was selected because it aligned perfectly with the needs of our customers for a small, light-weight gyroscope that was cost-effective and delivered exceptionally accurate performance."

"The Vision 1000 is already being heralded by the avionics industry as one of the best training tools to come to this market," said Mark Martin, VP, MEMS and sensor technology group, ADI. "ADI's ability to provide Appareo with a single-chip, high-performance gyroscope that meets rigorous aviation industry performance and quality standards is another example of how the need for high-performance MEMS motion sensors is spurring a revolution and the next wave of MEMS sensor adoption in many technologically advanced markets."

The ALERTS Vision 1000 system will be deployed initially in helicopters to capture and analyze large volumes of flight data, including inertial and position information, such as location and pitch/roll attitude as well as provide acoustic data and cockpit imagery, such as instrument panels and flight controls. The data can then be played back using Appareo Systems' AS Flight Analysis 3D flight virtualization software to accurately portray the aircraft's entire flight record.

At just a fraction the cost of other flight data recorders, the ALERTS Vision 1000 weighs less than 300 grams, requires only 28Vdc and ground to install, and is easily mounted in the cockpit, eliminating the extensive integration of other flight data monitoring systems.

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