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Civil Aviation Simulation Visual Regulation Review

Civil Aviation Simulation Visual Regulation Review

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Civil Aviation Simulation Visual Regulation Review

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  1. Civil Aviation Simulation Visual Regulation Review Richard Flitton 06 Mar 2001

  2. Industry Call to Action • RAeS Conference May 2000 highlighted the need for change • FAA (Paul Ray) • An increase in the numbers of ab initio pilots and more congested air space calls for better training fidelity • Current simulators lack the fidelity to train for all required tasks • Grand father rights may not be appropriate for sound, motion and visual systems in the future • IATA FSWG (Capt Donald Van Dyke) • World jet fleet is expected to double by 2018 • Required pilot entry level experience may be reduced • CFIT, loss of control & weather related events are not currently trained for • Training & checking requirements have not kept pace with these changes

  3. Need for increased visual standards? • IATA • Improved pixel resolution + texture sharpness • Enhanced scene correlation & fidelity • Terrain fidelity • More complex visually apparent weather, correlated with cockpit instruments • Runway visual surface conditions correlated with motion • More Air and ground traffic • Larger fields of view – fill the cockpit windows • FAA • Fully accurate airport models • Increased environmental simulation • Increased fields of view • Request for international review of visual (and motion) standards

  4. Existing Visual Regulations Visual regulations currently fall into three broad categories • Measurable tests • Displays: FOV, contrast ratio, brightness, resolution etc • IG: Transport delay, occultation etc • Demonstration tests • Runway definition at set distances • Attitude correlation • Visibility calibration • Subjective assessment • Visual scene content • Weather effects • This last group is the most difficult to define common standards for

  5. Legacy Visual Scene Content • Wide variety in visual scenes in training use today • Many legacy systems with inferior rendering technology • Limited processing capacity • Inferior texture schemes • Low screen resolution • Poor anti-aliasing schemes • Limited weather effects • Limited terrain fidelity & extent • Minimal airport content • Obsolescence is becoming an issue for many legacy systems

  6. Present Day Visual Content • Improvements in all areas – but still difficult to quantify

  7. Visual scene accuracy is increasingly important • New procedures such as GNSS approaches, requires airport databases to be geo-referenced to precise absolute positions. • WGS84 geo-referencing is required to be GNSS compliant. • The simulator integration of Terrain Awareness Warning Systems (TAWS) requires terrain and obstacle information in the vicinity of the aerodrome. • For realistic training, all geo-spatial information stored within each individual aircraft system (e.g.,TAWS, FMS, ND, etc.) will have to match the database stored in the simulator’s visual database. • RTCA SC-193 and EUROCAE WG-44 are producing international Aerodrome & Terrain Mapping standards to this end • Fidelity demanded by this effort currently far outstrips available source data and IG processing capacity. • Real-time portrayal of this data could be many years away • What will be available in the next few years ?

  8. Tomorrow’s Content • Visual systems around the corner will include dramatic improvements • Terrain fidelity – greater than EPGWS currently implements • Large amounts of photo- derived imagery • Extended weather effects • Very large areas • Scene creation tools coupled with IG processing power will enable very detailed airports to be built • All airport buildings & 3D signage • All runway & taxiways including 3D profiles • Large numbers of dynamic 3D objects • Active scenes with embedded environment dynamics • Very high image quality • Very sophisticated anti-aliasing techniques • High pixel resolutions

  9. Tomorrows Civil Content - Drawn from Military Technology

  10. Tomorrows Civil Terrain Fidelity Salt Lake City – 100m terrain grid

  11. Tomorrow’s Displays • Military systems in use today are a guide to our future • Variable resolution & pixel cannon dome displays create eye-limiting images with large fields of view – but at a price • Larger collimated fields of view for multi-pilot systems may be difficult to achieve due to physical and cost constraints • Potential for very bright and high screen resolution (10M pixel + ) laser projectors (overcome dynamic range problems of LCDs) • Will require radically different IG design - and may be cost prohibitive • Increasing display regulations may add cost to the user

  12. Tomorrow’s Visual Regulation Needs • Current visual regulation criteria that are measurable and demonstrable will likely be adequate for tomorrow • If it isn't broke, don’t fix it ! • Visual scene content assessment needs to be based upon less subjective criteria • We need better definition criteria for: • Terrain fidelity • 3D obstructions & dynamic objects • Airport content • Weather portrayal • Training credits may need to be linked to improved scene fidelity to provide operator incentive

  13. Suggested Terrain Fidelity Criteria • Terrain fidelity should be assessed based upon areas of interest • Operator should to provide data references used to construct DBs. • IG based tools could be used to spot check terrain fidelity • Databases that met these requirement could be used for advanced training • EPGWS / CFIT avoidance • Zero flight airport recognition, familiarity and navigation check-off • Advanced ATC procedures

  14. Airport Content Criteria Definition • Airport content should be described in terms of the features required to achieve a given training task, not the processing capacity of the IG in question • Describing the required content within the simulator regulations would likely make these documents unnecessarily cumbersome • Proposal: Advanced aviation databases should adhere to a separate internationally agreed standard: • Create an agreed Civil Aviation Visual Scene Content Specification • This document could be used to define database content standards • Each advanced database would be required to be approved separately • Standards would define: • Data, accuracy and revision tracking requirements • Scene content requirement • Verification requirements • Industry Groups (RAeS and IATA) could co-chair standard definition • Liaise with RTCA / EUROCAE to ensure commonality of objectives

  15. Conclusion • Current training needs are beyond current visual system simulator regulations • Advances in aircraft systems and future traffic growth demand improved visual databases and common content standards. • Planned aviation industry airport mapping standards are not likely to result solutions for civil simulation in the near /mid term • Regulations should be updated to reflect improved terrain fidelity that can be specified and measured • Airport content is impractical to quantify within the regulation documents • The simulation industry should work towards separate international standards for advanced visual scene content that can be referenced by the existing regulations