Collins Aerospace is driving breakthroughs in intelligent systems design and automation. Our expertise in intelligent technologies – from advanced secure communications to assured navigation and timing, and flight management systems to sensor, navigation and communications solutions – provide users with more powerful situational awareness, increased collaboration and ultimately, success in the battlespace and in commercial flight. And through our advanced flight control, data link and guidance technologies, we’re enhancing the integration and safety of manned and unmanned flight. It’s about keeping those who benefit from our technologies safer, more secure and more informed by taking a more intelligent approach to redefining aerospace.
A more intelligent battlespace
From the tactical edge and into space, Collins Aerospace enables our customers to expand their reach with proven, full-spectrum capabilities. Warfighters gain secure, up-to-the-minute tactical and near real-time situational information – a force-multiplier that empowers them to make better, faster decisions and take action, when it matters most.
Our solutions empower the intelligent battlespace of today and tomorrow:
- Next-generation software-defined radios ensure secure connectivity between airborne, ground and sea-based elements
- Advanced sensors work in concert with data links and communication devices to rapidly distribute information throughout the battlespace
- Navigation capabilities ensure the critical location accuracy of the information, and – when paired with our anti-jam technologies and assured position, navigation and timing (PNT) capabilities – ensure soldiers stay connected and maintain their information advantage, even in the most degraded battlespaces
Whether in the air, on the ground or at sea, we keep defense forces decisively aware and navigating confidently with innovative, intelligent technologies to exploit every advantage within the battlespace.
For example, consider the intelligence delivered through these solutions:
TruNet™ networked communications solution
Our TruNet™ networked communications solution enables defense forces to stay connected across the entire battlespace. TruNet is the most advanced, integrated software-defined communications solution available, and gives ground, airborne and mobile forces the power to share critical data, image, voice and video securely and in real time. Our multi-hop technology enables users to communicate beyond line of sight, and our low-latency speeds – even in a multi-hop topology – ensure forces receive mission-critical information sooner.
MS-110 multispectral reconnaissance system
In the fog of war, actionable intelligence on enemy movements and force strength can be the difference that delivers battlefield success. Mount our long-range, stand-off MS-110 multispectral reconnaissance system to fast jets or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) like the Reaper to get high-resolution day and night imagery, from overhead and at long ranges – a slant range of 80-plus nautical miles. Multispectral imaging enables operators to detect a new range of threat and call out decoys, camouflage and obscurants even at long distances.
Enhancing situational awareness in commercial aviation
We’re also bringing more intelligent systems to the commercial aviation sector, delivering solutions that reduce pilot workload, enhance situational awareness and assist with smarter, timelier decision-making.
For example, consider the value these solutions deliver:
Enhanced Flight Vision System
Poor visibility due to fog or precipitation is the cause of many frustrating and costly airline delays. But Collins’ Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS) gives pilots unparalleled situational awareness, even in poor conditions. When combined with our advanced EVS-3600 multispectral sensor, EFVS blends multiple infrared and visible light cameras on dual head-up displays, enabling pilots to better detect the runway in poor weather and continue to operate the aircraft in adverse conditions. Recently released regulations will enable airlines to leverage the EFVS to perform operations in lower visibility conditions than previously possible, reducing costly delays for airlines and improving on-time performance for passengers.
Today, pilots have to request – or be directed by air traffic control – to go around a thunderstorm in the aircrafts’ path, and other aircraft in the area are daisy-chained to follow the new route. To compensate for weather changes, these routes often add significant time to the flight plan. Now, we’re evolving our avoidance re-router (ARR) – which projects weather over time and recommends a flight path to avoid potentially hazardous weather – from a ground-based tool to a flight deck solution. It will leverage data such as prevailing winds from a variety of connected sources to account for the future movement of hazardous weather, suggesting a new route that pilots can choose to avoid adverse weather while still reducing flight plan deviations, saving time and fuel, and enabling passengers to make their connections.
With our autopilot and flight control systems, and our sensors, navigation, communication and laser systems, we’re developing technologies that enhance the integration and safety of manned and unmanned flight. These secure, reliable solutions reduce workload and enable smarter decision-making today, while enabling autonomous applications for the future airspace. For example:
The next-generation vehicle management computer
Aircraft are getting more autonomous – in fact, 90 percent of an average commercial flight today is flown by autopilot. And the aviation industry wants to expand its ability to fly 24/7, while maintaining safety for operators and passengers. To enable these capabilities, we are developing a next-generation vehicle management computer (VMC) that will enable fly-by-wire technology and more autonomous flight for new and retrofit applications. With triple multi-core processors providing 20 times the processing power of our existing flight control computers, the VMC can assume multiple-mission roles across a wide range of commercial and military, manned and unmanned, and fixed- and rotary-wing applications, providing redundancy, reducing pilot workload and offering a safer environment for crews in degraded visual conditions.
Powerful flight management and flight-critical connectivity for UAS operations
As aviation authorities work to complete the regulations to enable the full integration of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) into the civil airspace, Collins Aerospace is prepared to meet the new safety standards. Our UAS-certified Flight Management System (FMS) automates a wide variety of in-flight tasks to maintain precise navigation along a flight plan. With our FMS, operators in ground control stations can pilot a UAS using standard navigation routes, waypoints and more. And our reliable, safe and secure Command Non-Payload Communications (CNPC) data links provide a high-integrity pathway for the critical command and control signals that are crucial for operating in civil airspace. CNPC is an important part of the NASA Systems Integration and Operationalization research program that tests civil airspace access standards.
Integrating UAS into the airspace
Ensuring command-and-control capabilities for individual UAS is critical. But so is the ability to manage the bigger picture of the mixed airspace. Today we’re working with NASA and other entities to use our web-based WebUASSM flight data display to successfully manage multiple UAS in the air and redirect aircraft set on conflicting flight paths as needed. Designed to support small UAS operations as well as more complex large UAS operations in civil airspace, this secure, flexible and scalable system is already in use by railways for remote monitoring of tracks and the North Dakota-based UAS Traffic Management Pilot Program.