Enhanced Vision System (EVS) enables pilots to operate in lower visibility conditions by giving them a clearer image of the flightpath ahead. They use multispectral camera imaging such as near-infrared cameras, millimeter wave radar etc.
The image can be displayed on either a central MFD between the FMS's or onto a Head Up Display (HUD) or a Head Wearable Display (HWD). Both the HUD and HWD can be LHS only or installed/worn by both pilots.Note that this is not the same as a Synthetic Vision System (SVS) which generates and projects a computer generated image.
Systems which combine both EVS and SVS are referred to as Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS).
On early installations, the FLIR camera was mounted between the radome and the nose wheel well. That location has proven to have had parallax problems due to the distance from the pilots eye level and in the last few years BBJs with EVS now have the cameras mounted between the radome and the windscreen which has solved the problem. The other early difficulty was the head-down display of the EVS image onto an MFD, this was replaced by HUD or HWD.
*** Updated 23 Nov 2020 ***
EVS systems have been available for the 737 for at least 20 years on all generations.
EVS on Originals
A few 737-200VIP's were fitted with dual Universal UNS-1F FMS, dual Litton 92 laser IRS and FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared Camera) which was displayed on the central MFD between the FMS’s.
EVS on Classics
Dating from around 2000, the “Advanced Cockpit” for the 737-3/4/500 was a joint venture between ARC Avionics, Commercial Jet, DAC International and Universal Avionics. Although it did not have the EIS, it was a fully integrated package - EFIS, FMS, Synthetic Vision, and Terrain Awareness & Warning System (TAWS) with extensive software to work with existing autopilot, flight director and short range Nav systems. Sadly the system was never bought.
EVS on NGs
BBJs have been offered with an Enhanced Vision System (EVS) capability since 2009. This overlays the EVS display onto the HUD and also onto the F/O’s ND for single HUD aircraft.
Nose-mounted EVS Camera on a BBJ
The Head Wearable Display Product
29 Sep 2020 - AerSale Commences AerAware™ EFVS Flight Testing Featuring Universal Avionics ClearVision™ Components On A Specially Modified Commercial Boeing 737-800 Prototype Aircraft.
AerSale, Inc., a leading provider of aviation products and services, announced today that it is nearing completion of initial flight testing of AerAware™, an advanced EFVS solution that enables a pilot to ‘see’ through low visibility conditions by presenting advanced imaging technology along with real time aircraft primary flight systems data on an Elbit Systems/Universal Avionics SkyLens™ Head Wearable Display (HWD). AerSale has successfully integrated this originally developed military technology on a commercial Boeing 737-800 NG aircraft.
The integration of EFVS into commercial aircraft is an innovative and transformative technology developed and deployed after thorough safety testing to advance commercial aviation safety and operational efficiencies. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has identified EFVS as one of the objectives of the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) improvements, the FAA-led modernization of America's air transportation system to make flying even safer, more efficient, and more predictable.
AerAware™ includes a ClearVision™ multi-spectral camera, SkyLens™ HWD and other system components manufactured by Universal Avionics, a subsidiary of Israeli manufacturer Elbit Systems, and marketed by Universal Avionics as ClearVision™ EFVS.
AerSale has modified a company owned aircraft to integrate the Universal Avionics ClearVision™ suite including a modified radome to accommodate the camera installation, system wiring, connectors and mounting hardware in equipment bays and flight deck. AerSale will have Parts Manufacturing Approval (PMA) for the installation components while Universal Avionics has PMA for the ClearVision™ system components.
AerSale is uniquely positioned as a ’one-stop shop‘ for the project, integrating Universal Avionics’ ClearVision™ components on the Boeing 737-800 NG platform by providing the prototype aircraft, creating the engineering design, building the modification kit, performing the installation, and performing necessary certification flights.
The FAA has assigned Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) project number ST16454AT-T for AerAware™, indicating the agency’s acceptance of AerSale’s STC application and the commencement of the STC certification process. When initial flight evaluation of AerAware™ is completed by AerSale, the Company will progress to FAA flight testing, for approval of system use on commercial aircraft, anticipating FAA STC approval by Q4 2020, followed up with EASA approval in early 2021.
so Nezaj, President of AerSale’s Engineered Solutions Division said, “The successful integration of Universal’s ClearVision™ EFVS into AerSale’s AerAware™ product brings a superior advanced system available as a retrofit to existing commercial aircraft. The quality and content of the imagery seen by the pilot wearing our HWD is second to none. Our technology integrates military grade hardware onto existing commercial aircraft and will be a preferred EFVS solution in the large existing addressable commercial fleet market.”
“We were ecstatic to partner with Universal to provide our engineering and modification expertise to install ClearVision™ EFVS into commercial aircraft” said Nicolas Finazzo, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of AerSale. “We immediately recognized that the Universal EFVS technology was superior to anything else that was available and decided to include virtually all commercial aircraft platforms in our STC development process.”
AerAware™ combines real-time aircraft systems data, advanced multispectral camera imaging, and 3D synthetic vision onto an ergonomic head wearable display that can be worn by either or both pilots. This technology integration simultaneously enables clear visibility to ‘external world’ references and flight deck displays, while also allowing pilots to capitalize on its wide field of view synthetic landscape imagery throughout the entire approach, landing, and rollout envelope.
With AerAware™, required visual approach and landing references are revealed to the pilot significantly earlier in the landing approach. This enables pilots to descend below published natural vision instrument approach minimums. AerAware™ even allows aircraft dispatch ‘to and from’ airports when visibility is well below published natural vision instrument approach minimums.
the FAA fined Boeing $19.68 million for installing sensors that had not been tested or approved as being compatible with the 737 head-up display system. The FAA said the sensors were installed in HUDs of 618 Boeing 737 NG aircraft between June 2015 and April 2019 and of 173 Boeing 737 Max aircraft from July 2017 until March 2019. The HUDs involved are made by Rockwell Collins. Boeing failed to verify that the sensors were listed as interchangeable, according to Friday's letter from a lawyer in FAA's enforcement division near Seattle to Lynne Hopper, Boeing's vice-president of engineering for commercial airplanes. The FAA said the sensors had not been tested or approved as being compatible with the Rockwell Collins guidance systems, and that Boeing had apparently violated federal regulations and its own policies. Boeing said it has co-operated with the FAA. It said the matter involves documentation of parts and is not a safety issue.