Enhanced flight vision system (EFVS) is an aerospace system which provides an image of the scene and displays it to the pilot with an image which is better than unaided human vision. EFVS uses imaging sensor such as infrared camera or radar, a color camera, and visual display for the pilot, which can be a head-up display or a head-mounted display. A combined vision system can be created when an EFVS is combined with a synthetic vision system. Several applications of EFVS are increasing in modern aircrafts such as military or civilian aircraft, rotary wing (helicopter) or fixed wing (airplane) as this system can attach to the helicopter, airplane, and civilian aircraft very easily. Further, EFVS helps the pilot to see the artificially displayed image in exact positions relative to the real world. In addition to the enhanced image, the system will display visual cues such as a horizon bar and runway location.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has released the long-awaited Enhanced Flight Vision System (EFVS) rule FAR 91.176 that will bring numerous benefits to aviation. To be more precise, the rule will expand the applicability of EFVS for business aircraft owners and operators and will introduce, for the first time, similar benefits to the air transport industry. New Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) rule will open up more available runways on bad weather days for EVS-equipped operators. The new rule allows operators to take credit for their enhanced vision systems and file to airports with worse weather than they could in the past. This rule significantly increases the chance of a successful approach and landing in very low-visibility conditions, according to the FAA.
Rules and benefits pertaining to EFVS will bring attractiveness to the market. The benefits of using EFVS are that it enhances low-visibility flight and ground operations, increases access, efficiency, and throughput at airports where low visibility is a factor. Further, the improvement in the design of infrastructure is essential to hold up low visibility operations, which provides a real-time display of the outside world in low-visibility conditions by means of imaging sensors. This design enables descent below Decision Altitude/Decision Height (DA/DH) or Minimum Descent Altitude (MDA) in low visibilities on a greater number of approach procedure types (precision, approach procedure with vertical guidance (APV) and non-precision). These benefits are expected to drive the market as they are mostly concerned with the safety which is a need for instance. Further, the market progress for enhanced flight vision systems can be attributed to factors such as the focus on growing demand for systems ensuring reliable flight operations, enhancing situational awareness, and increasing concern towards ensuring aviation safety.
The cost associated with technology up gradation is really high and is restraining the market growth to a certain extent. Besides, it has been observed that the quality of enhanced vision image, as well as the level of enhanced vision sensor performance majorly, depends on the atmospheric conditions along with various energy source conditions that can be visible or non-visible. These difficulties related with the functioning of these systems have further posed challenges for the market, while the implementation of enhanced flight vision systems and related retrofit and aftermarket options are creating promising growth avenues for the market.
Trends in the market are also in highlight as many such cases have come into picture such as Gulfstream, an early partner with NASA on enhanced vision systems, has used EFVS systems for at least a decade. This system is used with the technology now standard on its large cabin fleet, including its G450, G550 and G650, and an option on the company’s mid-range aircraft. Further EFVS technology is adopted by FedEx as a standard feature on its widebodies. With over 650 aircraft, FedEx has the largest all-cargo fleet in the industry. In this market in 2016, Elbit Systems introduced the BrightNite system, an advanced new multi-spectral technology, which gives an enhanced solution for the degraded visual environment (DVE). The system is a multi-spectral end-to-end panoramic piloting solution, which is lightweight, compact, and cost-effective. It delivers the essential data that enables flight and displays hazards, tactical data, and mission conformal symbology during all DVE conditions.
Adding to it, Rockwell Collins and Honeywell Aerospace have developed an advanced cockpit technology to deal with the challenges for rotary-wing military aircraft to operate in degraded visual environments. In 2014, Honeywell developed the Synthetic Vision Avionics Backbone (SVAB) system with US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which operated a Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk in a degraded visual environment. The system used a sensor-impartial approach and consisted of multiple sensors and databases to create an integrated 3D environment for pilots. SVAB enables the pilot to look at a synthetic environment of obstacles and help the aircraft land safely, thus providing a better situational awareness.
The global Enhance flight vision system is studied across: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and LMAEA (Latin America, Middle East and Africa). North America and Europe, amongst all, are key regional segments that collectively contribute to majority of the part in the global market. The growth of the aerospace sector along with regulations that necessitate aerospace companies to deploy enhanced vision systems in both fixed and rotary wings aircraft have been key factors boosting growth in these regions. Asia Pacific & Latin America are other key regions contributing to the growth of global enhanced vision system market. Asia Pacific stood as one of the rapidly growing regional markets since past years with China, Japan, India, and South Korea contributing majorly to this regional market owing to presence of large original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and growing demand for private and regional jets in the region.
On the basis of technology:
• Synthetic vision
• Global positioning system
• Millimetre wave radar
On the basis of component:
• Display unit
On the basis of platform:
• Fixed wing
• Rotary wing.
The prominent players in the market are Honeywell International, Inc. (U.S.), United Technologies Corporation (U.S.), L-3 Communications Holdings, Inc. (U.S.), Thales Group (France), Elbit Systems Ltd. (Israel), Rockwell Collins, Inc. (U.S.), Esterline Technologies Corporation (U.S.), and Astronics Corporation (U.S.). Dassault Falcon Jets Corp. (U.S.), Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation (U.S.), Bombardier Inc. (Canada), and Embraer SA (Brazil)