Honeywell Sees Connected Radar on the Horizon

The Honeywell Weather Information Service is all about delivering the right information to pilots and dispatchers at the right time. Now, we’re working on adding even more capabilities to our award-winning weather app by integrating and sharing weather conditions detected by other aircraft in flight.

By collecting and aggregating weather data from weather radar systems onboard multiple aircraft, the Weather Information Service combines information from a wider range of inputs to create the most complete view ever of weather along an aircraft’s projected route.

Called Connected Radar, this capability will be particularly valuable to helicopter pilots and dispatchers, including oil and gas operators who fly over water where ground radar coverage doesn’t exist. It also will benefit operators who fly in remote and rugged terrain where radar signals are either not available or are blocked by obstacles.

The Connected Radar capability is enabled by Honeywell’s most advanced IntuVue® RDR-4000 3D weather radar system that flies on leading commercial airliners. When Connected Radar becomes operational, Honeywell will be able to download weather hazard data from all participating IntuVue-equipped aircraft, combine it with multiple other inputs, and make it immediately available to pilots and dispatchers using the Weather Information Service app.

Connected Radar

The concept is sometimes called “Crowdsourced Weather,” because it uses weather information from many independent sources to create a complete picture of current and potential severe weather.

With the Weather Information Service app, hazards are displayed on an intuitive map on the Electronic Flight Bag (EFB) that can be used by flight crews to make well-informed decisions that can improve safety, reduce delays, and save fuel and operating costs. Weather Information Service, which is available for iOS and Windows tablets as well as desktop PCs, provides flight crews, dispatchers and airline meteorologists with currently observed and forecasted weather. The service runs on Electronic Flight Bags, iPads and Windows desktops.

Only our IntuVue RDR-4000 3D weather radar system has the capabilities to enable Connected Radar. Radar innovations include the use of volumetric 3D scanning and pulse compression technologies that provide vastly improved weather detection and unique predictive hazard warnings for lightning, hail, windshear and turbulence.

By rapidly scanning 160 degrees in front of the aircraft to 320 nautical miles at many tilt angles, the system captures weather data vertically all the way from 60,000 feet down to the ground. Even though the aircraft detecting the data may be flying at high altitudes, this broad vertical range means crews that operate at lower altitudes can benefit from information at their level. IntuVue radars provide a clear view of weather conditions and potential hazards along and in the vicinity of the flight path and, with Connected Radar, can make that data available to other Weather Information Service users.

Connected Radar is expected to be operational in early 2017.