AgustaWestland presents enhanced hovering system

Feb. 26, 2014 at 1:35 PM
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ROME, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- AgustaWestland is showcasing its certified system for enhanced safety during hovering operations by helicopters at an industry exhibition in California.

The product is the Obstacle Proximity LiDAR System, or OPLS, for improved safety of its helicopters in search-and-rescue and emergency medical service missions.

"The system is designed to help the crew avoid main and tail rotor strikes against peripheral obstacles, which jeopardize the aircraft's safety during low speed hovering maneuvers in confined spaces," the company said.

"The OPLS consists of three main rotor-head-mounted LiDAR (Laser imaging Detection and Ranging) sensors that generate a 360 degree radial view around the aircraft and a dedicated cockpit control panel."

AgustaWestland said system enables accurate detection and tracking of short-range obstacles. Pilots can operate and monitor the system from the control panel while video and audio indications are provided on multi-function displays.

The OPLS is now an option on the company's AW139 multi-role, intermediate twin helicopter and will soon be available for use on AW169, AW189 and AW101 helicopters.

The system is being shown this week at Heli-Expo 2014.

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