The place for technical discussions about GA and flying.
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By JAFO
#1820232
@joeycessna - your initial question doesn't really seem to have any bearing on whether you should take your invention further. The question is not whether anything exists which helps, the question is, do most GA pilots have access to it?

Most GA pilots that I know don't have significantly different kit in the aircraft to what they had fifteen years ago. Most people have Skydemon (or similar) and often some form of EC but nothing to particularly help with inadvertent flight into IMC, as far as I'm aware.

I'm sure that there are aircraft out there with all sorts of whizz-bang kit that will do all sorts of incredible things but the question is, do most people have access to those aircraft?
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By TopCat
#1820257
joeycessna wrote:My apologies but how it works is rather confidential

Oh, what a surprise.
and unimportant at this stage.

So you say. You want information but you're not prepared to give the context that would allow a useful answer.
Determining if the need for it still exists is of concern to me, and that is why I am asking the question. As experienced aviators, I am hoping you guys can provide an answer.

Well, yes then. If it's something that genuinely solves the problems associated with disorientation, in a way that doesn't require the skills associated with looking at an instrument panel and inferring aircraft orientation and the effects of control input from those instruments.

Or no, if it doesn't.

If this device isn't some kind of autopilot that takes control, but rather allows the pilot to see where the horizon is in IMC, then it must be some kind of AR display, and I'd suggest that whether it would be any use to a pilot with no instrument training would depend on its realism - which is why people are asking what it does.

The absolute minimum would be something projected onto the cockpit windows (including the side ones), because otherwise the pilot is back into the realm of looking at a screen or screens, and deducing what the aeroplane is doing, which are skills other than those required to manoeuvre the aircraft in VMC.
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By Flying_john
#1820260
I think we are being trolled by a brand new member of the forum.

If you really want the help, advice, opinion of 100's of experienced Pilots then you need to be a little more forthcoming with your idea. That doesn't have to be any patentable methods, but for example you could say you have a method of seeing through cloud, or perhaps a method of feeding audio tones into the left/right headset to determine whether the pilot needs to bank left or right to remain upright.

But unless you give more information and because there are, and have been for some years, methods of remaining upright in IMC, then you will not get a proper answer to your question.
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By GrahamB
#1820276
@OP
In answer to your initial question, yes, things have moved on.

Integrated flight displays, some including synthetic vision, are quite widely available on upper end aircraft these days, and affordable down to quite modest aircraft.

I have an autopilot for my modest 4-seater. It has a blue button which will return me to straight and level flight should I ever lose it. More importantly, it has envelope protection which prevents me getting into that state. These work even when the autopilot isn't engaged.

I'm intrigued though why you think someone who can't interpret an unusual attitude from an attitude indicator could interpret it something else in the cockpit.

I suggest you look at the Garmin website to see what is avaiable these sdays by way of flight displays.
By joeycessna
#1820448
My original question was simply, with modern day avionics (which I explained I am not familiar with) is SD a thing of the past? From various replies, where "state of the art" autopilots etc. are referred to, I now understands that SD is a thing of the past for people that can afford "the state of the art" devices.

JAFO put it in a nutshell when he stated "The question is not whether anything exists which helps, the question is, do most GA pilots have access to it?".

As I mentioned in a earlier post, all my device does is allows a pilot to see the horizon in IMC, and hopefully prevent him/her becoming disorientated. It has no relationship to the aircrafts systems or the pilots ability. From your advice, I now know there is a need for such a device that all GA pilots can afford at around the cost of one half of a David Clark headset. I must apologize if I came across as a troll, that certainly wasn't my intention. I must also apologize for not disclosing how the device works. Anyone that is familiar with IP law, will understand the reason being, disclosure to the public will extinguish any future claim to novelty. Thank you all for your help and kind regards, joe

p,s Not sure if a video can be posted on this forum. If it can, I will shortly make one showing the device being used in a Hawk XP with the T&B, and AH covered, and operating in IMC (that's if I survive)
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By Paul_Sengupta
#1820452
That's the issue with modern glass screens, only some people have them!

You can get a tablet based AHRS, it's included with the Stratux if you buy the extra £15 AHRS module (or £4 if you don't want the official one). All in under £100 with ADS-B and Flarm and everything...
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By GrahamB
#1820469
@joeycessna Have you studied carefully the psycho-physiology of SD sufficient carefully to determine that a second presentation of an artifical horizon will actually help the pilot? How it develops and what the typical behaviours and responses are?

There are two fundamental types of SD - one where the pilot knows they're disoriented, and the other when they don't. How does your device deal with the more pernicious second case?

I'm stiill perplexed by how a second (or third, or more) type of horizon presentation will assist a pilot when they have lost it? A traditional AI is pretty good at tellling a pilot where the horizon is; the issue is normally the incorrect response of the pilot to what in the cold light of day to an external observer would be obvious clues.
By TopCat
#1820516
GrahamB wrote:I'm stiill perplexed by how a second (or third, or more) type of horizon presentation will assist a pilot when they have lost it? A traditional AI is pretty good at tellling a pilot where the horizon is; the issue is normally the incorrect response of the pilot to what in the cold light of day to an external observer would be obvious clues.

This was my point earlier. Another screen is just, well, another screen. You'd need to acquire skills through training and practice, that would enable you to interpret the display and translate that into appropriate control inputs. Just what you do now in IMC training, in other words.

What I'm imagining is something that the VMC-only pilot would need no training to use, because (s)he would look at it in the same way as (s)he looks through the cockpit windows at the outside world.

I've flown an A320 sim at Heathrow, and didn't do too badly flying round a circuit using VMC-only skills, looking at a picture of what was(n't really) outside projected on to the cockpit "windows". And it felt staggeringly real, far more so than a PC sim. No SD at all.

Obviously you aren't going to get that level of realism for $200, but the point remains: if what was projected was realistic enough, you'd be using the skills you already have, because the visual cues would match the inner-ear cues.

Think FS2020, GPS and attitude-sensor, fast scenery download, switch off all the weather, and project onto the windows instead of your PC monitors. But that's not going to be $200 either :lol: Great if you're Elon Musk, but otherwise, not so much. Even with that, your eyes are still focusing close, unlike in the 'real' commercial sims where by some amazing magic they're focusing at a natural distance.

Whereas, if all you get is a HUD of some kind, with perhaps a horizon line on the windscreen, that's nowhere near enough to be more than marginally useful. In some unusual attitudes, the horizon isn't visible through the windscreen at all.

Without more information, I'm just not warming to the concept at all. If it's (yet) another instrument to look at and figure stuff out from, then one would need instrument training, in which case why not get a suitable rating. And if it's not, I just don't believe it would be realistic enough to let you get away with VMC-only skills.
By joeycessna
#1820592
If in a very unlikely situation where one had a total electrical and vacuum failure in VMC, could an experienced IR pilot get the aircraft back safely on terra firma? (presuming he doesn't have a big red handle) I doubt it, but with my device he could.

As I mentioned in a earlier post, in the event that a non IR pilot strayed into IMC my device would prevent him/her becoming disorientated as he/she could still see the horizon. I have never heard of a pilot becoming disorientated in VMC with maybe the exception of starring at the ground during a spin.

Rgds, joe

p,s
Not sure if a video can be posted on this forum. If it can, I will shortly make one showing the device being used in a Hawk XP with the T&B, and AH covered, and operating in IMC (that's if I survive!)
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By VRB_20kt
#1820596
As I mentioned previously, in IMC the pilot's body gives false signals about his orientation in space. IR training is significantly about learning to rely solely on the instruments even though they may apparently not be telling the truth. The training is then extended to work out how to manage the situation where some of the instruments are telling the truth, others are not and both go against what the pilot's senses are saying.

If your$200 package can somehow present the pilot's with a virtual world that matches the real world as it would appear in good visibility and leave the cockpit fully accessible then it could be quite something. If it's a panel instrument that shows the outside horizon as in good visibility then I would question whether that would provide sufficient insulation of the pilot from his/her senses to make a difference in comparison to a normal artificial horizon.

(Incidentally, I'm assuming that the envisaged usage is a "get out of jail" card rather than providing full navigational capabilities?)
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By JAFO
#1820605
joeycessna wrote:Not sure if a video can be posted on this forum. If it can, I will shortly make one showing the device being used in a Hawk XP with the T&B, and AH covered, and operating in IMC (that's if I survive!)


So, Joe, it's top secret apart from the video of it in use?

I can't wait to see it, I think the easiest way is to upload it to YouTube and then put the YouTube link here (you'll see the YouTube icon when you try to post, just put the video ID in there).
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By rf3flyer
#1820610
I find this an intriguing thread and am a little dismayed at the rather sneering views expressed by some.
The only thing about joeycessna's device, whatever it is, I find hard to credit is the probable cost, but perhaps that more represents the cost of components in his 'bits' box than a finished product.

Memory's not what it was but I seem to recall reading about something like this several decades ago, maybe posited by Burt Rutan, where a synthetic horizon laser line could be projected across the cockpit. Lots of technical challenges there, sure, but I imagine something like that would be very intuitive in use.

I'd love to see the video.
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By joeycessna
#1820736
Re "So, Joe, it's top secret apart from the video of it in use?"

Prior to posting a video, I will have applied for a long term utility patent. Naturally I would like to gain some financial reward for my efforts. However, at 75 years old, that is not really important to me. To be honest, If my device were to save one soul, that would be enough compensation. The only reason I haven't taken out a patent over the year is that I assumed with the rapid advancement in avionics technology, my device would be no longer needed. That is why in the original post I asked the question "With the advent of TAA "glass cockpit" aircraft, is pilot spatial disorientation still the insidious killer, or is it a thing of the past?" . From various responses, I deduced the simple answer to be "yes it is a thing of the past for those who can afford it"

With all due respect, I understand SD causes and effects quite well. In fact I had to in order to develop the device that can prevent it. In essence, the only reason I am aware of that a pilot becomes disorientated is due to the loss of visual cues to the brain.
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By Cessna571
#1820879
A few years ago I was asked by somebody who runs a display team of helicopters how hard it would be to make a virtual horizon with strings of LED's outside the cockpit, linked to a gyro and a microprocessor.

Sort of like a "glowing horizon" for IMC.

I had a working prototype in about 1 afternoon using strings of RGB's and an ARM Cortex processor and a small gyro, for this side of £50.
It's quite easy ;-)

The thing, it's not designing such stuff, it's fitting it to an aircraft and the subsequent liability insurance for if one goes in.

Having had experience of that sort of aviation liability insurance, personally I'd think long and hard before designing anything to go in an aircraft again ,that I was going to sell. (or even that I was going to give away).
By riverrock
#1820887
Cessna571 wrote:Having had experience of that sort of aviation liability insurance, personally I'd think long and hard before designing anything to go in an aircraft again ,that I was going to sell. (or even that I was going to give away).

Surely you just say that it isn't certified / only as an additional guide / not to be trusted over other instruments / not to be used for intentional IFR flight / pilot remains responsible / pilot needs trained etc. / Experimental status and use only.
That's what other devices do unless you want them installed in certified kit. If you want to do that, you'll then do the satisfactory testing to allow you to defend any court case.