Thales launches ‘brain’ of tomorrow’s aircraft

  • December 5, 2019
  • imc

Thales has launched a new flight management system (FMS) intended to manage aircraft in crowded skies within a connected aerospace ecosystem. Describing PureFlyt as ‘the brain of tomorrow’s aircraft’, the new FMS is designed to manage skies with many more aircraft and a very large number of drones. Thales anticipates that the FMS of the future will have to manage millions of aircraft movements each day.

According to Thales, PureFlyt combines “avionics, connectivity, air traffic management and flight management system expertise”, and is designed to provide an “entirely connected FMS to offer airframers and airlines the best combination of safety, security, and fuel and operations efficiency”.

PureFlyt is intended to allow crews to make better decisions using more sources of information, bring improved performance and reactivity to the aircraft during complex phases of flight and calculate alternative trajectories in real time to propose or react quickly to changes of plan. Thales says that providing pilots with the right information at the right time will heighten trust in the computed trajectory, enhancing efficiency and reducing pilot workload throughout all flight phases.

The company claims that PureFlyt is different in its ability to draw on both onboard and open-world data, such as weather information. By combining the integrity of the FMS and the agility and power of Electronic Flight Bag flight functionalities, aircraft trajectory can be permanently controlled, adapted and enhanced, resulting in optimised flight, decreased fuel consumption and improved passenger comfort.

The company says that it has used massive testing and artificial intelligence technologies to simulate 2 billion test cases enabled accumulating an invaluable experience, equivalent of 100 million actual flight hours.

Cyber-secure by design, PureFlyt has also been designed to be future-proof, accommodating the implementation of concepts such as the Initial 4D (I4D) trajectory management methods currently being researched by SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research) in the EU and NextGen in the US. By increasing the accuracy of flight in four dimensions, the fourth dimension being time, PureFlyt will enable more effectiveness in maintaining optimal distance between aircraft, particularly in the demanding phases of departure and approach.

PureFlyt will be available for entry into service in 2024, for both line-fit and retrofit.

“In the air, the digital revolution has only just begun. A paradigm shift in onboard cockpit electronics is taking place in the connected airspace and PureFlyt is at the forefront of this digital new age, leading the next generation of Flight Management System that truly makes the aircraft a node of connectivity. By computing and sharing vast amounts of data, PureFlyt will make flights safer, greener, easier for the pilots to manage, more profitable for airlines and, all this, ultimately for the full benefits of passengers” said Jean-Paul Ebanga, Thales vice-president Flight Avionics.