Augmented and Virtual Realities
Not too long ago, in fact in the 1990’s, Virtual and Augmented Realities were on the tip of every technology company’s tongue. While some gaming technologies have been able to utilize the virtual and augmented reality glasses, or goggle, capabilities … we are just beginning to scratch the surface in terms of applicability.
Augmented and Virtual Reality’s real world applications go far beyond entertainment and escapism, and we are going to be seeing such changes within the next 10 years. Social, medical, construction, and even culinary applications of Augmented and Virtual Reality technologies will forever revolutionize how our world operates.
AR Goggles in Aviation
The future is now with Augmented and even Virtual Reality glasses or goggles. We are seeing big names in the aviation industry somehow incorporating the new technologies in upcoming products. An example of these technologies is the Aero Glass headset and Air New Zealand’s HoloLens goggles.
The Aero Glass goggle/headset is wearable by all pilots and allows them to view vital cockpit control information- ranging from a fuel pressure gauge, altimeter levels, oil temperatures, and even shows a display of a drop zone or a targeted highlighted area. But this revolutionary product is not just helpful in this sense, upon putting the goggles on it also displays step by step instructions on how to turn on the aircraft. In their own words … “Aero Glass provides a unique turnkey solution addressing pilots’ need to properly visualize terrain, navigation, traffic (ADS-B), instrument, weather, and airspace information with access to vital safety procedures and protocols, without the requirement of inspecting instruments, phone or iPad.”1 Talk about a cool product!
Air New Zealand is also utilizing the technology with their headset which is a “fully self-contained holographic computer” which utilizes advanced sensors and processing units. These Microsoft goggles are used by the crew members to expedite the serving process, as well as enable the cabin crew to cater to an individual’s need. In their descriptive video, we see that the lens displays an possible allergies, the last flight the customer had with them, flight details (for instances of lay overs and live flight connection updates), and even the passengers emotional state. This technology almost exclusively serves the passenger’s needs, and is sure to revolutionize the aviation game.
Virtual and Augmented Realities in Maintenance
TAE Aerospace, an Australian based company, is working on wearable goggles that allow on-site technicians to collaborate with the product experts. This new technology provides assistance, in real time, to users around the globe. This means that an aerospace or aviation company in Malaysia will have a TAE professional in their ear, seeing what they see, giving them step by step instructions on how to repair their part.
Vehicles Harnessing the Power
Bell Helicopter recently revealed its futuristic FCX-001 which will utilize Augmented Reality, as well as artificial intelligence pilot system. This vastly differs from today’s helicopters which run with a “Fly-By-Wire” system; utilizing the artificial intelligence to allow an optionally piloted vehicle. This allows the pilot to assume the role of safety and mission officer on the Heli-craft, while allowing the artificial intelligence to guide and fly with the pilot. This is surely a small step towards a more integrated aviation experience, for all of the aviation and aerospace world.
The Future for AR and VR in Aviation
The future for aviation looks bright, especially with the incorporation of augmented and virtual realities in the forms of goggles, glasses, and even windshields. We here at PartsBase love seeing these new technologies emerge, and are excited to see the direction this will take the field. As always, follow our blog to keep track of the newest advancements in aviation.