GPS Technology to Improve USAF Helicopter Safety

30 November 2009 (Last Updated November 30th, 2009 18:30)

The US Air Force will install and test advanced global positioning system (GPS) units, to improve safety of the air force's old rotary-wing aircraft, as well of its pilots. In the Defense Safety Oversight Council-sponsored test, the Garmin GNS-530AWT units will be installed in some of t

The US Air Force will install and test advanced global positioning system (GPS) units, to improve safety of the air force's old rotary-wing aircraft, as well of its pilots.

In the Defense Safety Oversight Council-sponsored test, the Garmin GNS-530AWT units will be installed in some of the 316th Wing, 1st Helicopter Squadron's UH-1N 'Huey' helicopters.

The GPS units, equipped with a global terrain database will warn the pilot of any potential collision, and will also alert them about towers with its obstruction database for North America, Central America and Western Europe.

The device, apart from tracking other aircraft in the area, can also track weather patterns including lightning strikes, wind flow and rain.