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Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
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Hill reveals digital cockpit for personal HX50
The Hill Digital Cockpit is fully integrated with the Hill Cloud and Hill app services to actively manage the aircraft, the pilot, flight ops, licensing, ongoing training and currency along with maintenance requirements.
The HDC's combination of high-definition synthetic vision, 21st century connectivity and clear instrument indications provides intelligent pilot support and workload reduction.

Hill Helicopters has unveiled the Hill Digital Cockpit (HDC) for its new Hill HX50 personal turbine helicopter.

HDC is a reimagined, 21st century user interface for the HX50, designed from the ground up to make light helicopter flight safer and easier than ever before. The system is focused on the modern light helicopter mission profile, typically operating to and from private unprepared landing areas.

HDC delivers an ergonomic, simple and intuitive workflow, integrating and complementing iPad-based navigation and flight planning apps through a single control interface. The HDC's combination of high-definition synthetic vision, 21st century connectivity and clear instrument indications provides intelligent pilot support and workload reduction.

“We designed the HX50 to simplify flight and give aspiring pilots the confidence they can fly,” says Hill Helicopters president and CEO Jason Hill. “The VFR-optimised HDC is central to this objective. Electronic flight systems available today are generally designed for fixed wing aircraft and are poorly suited to the typical missions of VFR private helicopter operators. We designed a simple, elegant digital cockpit that blends aerospace integrity with the very best of automotive and industrial design to provide unparalleled improvements in situational awareness. This delivers a near effortless flying experience, simplifies training, delivers optimal pilot support and oversight, and most importantly, boosts safety by intelligently managing the information flow, which minimises pilot workload and cognitive demand in all phases of flight.”

The HDC's single integrated pilot interface intelligently monitors the aircraft, providing the pilot with information as it is needed, including smart annunciations that suggest appropriate actions. This allows the normal primary flight information display to remain uncluttered.

The HDC is fully integrated with the Hill Cloud and Hill app services to actively manage the aircraft, the pilot, flight ops, licensing, ongoing training and currency along with maintenance requirements. It is also fully integrated with the Hill Haptic Control System, which provides shaped force feedback through the flight controls to protect the aircraft and operational envelope. This system includes the haptic power manager, which stiffens the collective resistance as power limits are approached and provides envelope protection for vortex ring, Vne and rotor speed limits through the cyclic control.

Additional features of the HDC include: central location to attach an iPad for additional navigation; call card pop-ups with situational information to assist with concise and effective radio calls; synthetic vision for enhanced situational awareness including wind awareness, synthetic vision wire and traffic alerting and integrated forward, rearward and downward facing camera views; cloud based flight data and video recording, delivered via full integration with the Hill Cloud and Hill App; integration of the Hill Active Safety Management System; full support with continual updates throughout the life of the aircraft; and full connectivity to cellular phones as well as music and content streaming devices.

The HDC user interface was designed in collaboration with Finnish software development company Rightware and implemented with the company's Kanzi software, the leading graphics technology used in the automotive industry for advanced visualisation and forward-looking use cases in the modern digital cockpit.

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