Night Vision Goggle Donation to Help Helicopter Students
Piloting helicopters with limited flying ability at night once meant the difference between life and death in critical missions, such as search and rescue.
Not so any more. Today’s teams are able to operate in even extremely low light conditions, using night-vision technology.
Students in Embry-Riddle's helicopter specialty degree program will be even more well prepared for work in the helicopter industry, thanks in part to L-3 Communications. L3 has generously donated a set of night vision goggles to be used in Embry-Riddle's Prescott Campus bachelor of aeronautical science helicopter speciality degree program.
Students will use the device in the advanced “Environmental Helicopter Operations” course, where they obtain the foundation for helicopter operations in varying environmental conditions. The students are introduced to aspects particular to helicopter flight as it pertains to adverse weather including day, night, and night vision goggle operations. The ground instruction on night vision goggle operations is in accordance with the ground training requirements outlined in FAR Part 61.31(k).
Assistant Professor Bryan Cox said the devices are playing an ever increasing role in night helicopter operations.
"We are pleased to have NVGs (night vision goggles) and L-3 supporting our students," he said. "It provides not only hands-on training but the field trip to L-3 also gives students an appreciation for emerging technology they will undoubtedly be using in the helicopter industry.”
Having the Tempe, Ariz. L-3 Warrior Systems Electron Tube Operations facility close to Embry Riddle’s Prescott campus provides for unique opportunities. As part of the course, the field trip to L-3 gives students the opportunity to see the sophisticated manufacturing process used to build the complex microchannel plates as well as other components of the night vision goggles.
“Embry-Riddle has always been on the forefront of emerging technology, so it only makes sense that industries such as L-3 contribute to that effort," Tom Horwath, director of business development for L-3 Communications. "With the ever-increasing focus on NVGs (night vision goggles) in commercial aviation, this donation supports the next generation of helicopter pilots who will be using our products in the future.