Genesys Aerosystems has announced plans to unveil a new helicopter cockpit demonstrator at the upcoming HAI Heli-Expo convention. The demonstrator will feature the company’s all-digita HeliSAS autopilot and stability augmentation system integrated with a four-display electronic flight instrument system (EFIS).
The company describes HeliSAS as a stability augmentation system (SAS) and two-axis autopilot that provides attitude stabilization and force feedback to the cyclic control for helicopters with hydraulic controls. The system architecture is a parallel design that maintains the integrity of the basic helicopter flight control rods while using electro-mechanical servo actuators that are connected to the helicopter’s flight controls rods with parallel linkage.
The HeliSAS is designed as an attitude-based system that accepts attitude source data using a combination of the installed attitude gyro or digital attitude heading reference system (AHRS) inputs, and motion sensors located in the Flight Control Computer (FCC). The FCC commands the servo actuators to apply small corrections to the cyclic as required to maintain attitude.
In cases where a pilot may lose visual reference due to limited visibility conditions, releasing the cyclic allows the helicopter to automatically return to a near-level attitude when the “SAS” is on.
The company says that the cockpit demonstrator, though not a real simulator, provides a platform for pilots and engineers to experience the true dynamic behavior of all the systems working together. “The HeliSAS servos are fully coupled to the controls so you can feel what the system is doing throughout all phases of flight,” explains Genesys Aerosystems Field Test Engineer/Test Pilot Chat Howard.
The demonstrator also features 3D Synthetic Vision, Highway-In-The-Sky (HITS) navigation, geo-referenced hover vector, Helicopter Terrain Awareness and Warning System (H-TAWS) and Engine Instrument Crew Advisory System (EICAS).