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New Innovations in Helicopter Displays – Part 2

New Innovations in Helicopter Displays – Part 2

New Innovations in Helicopter Displays – Part 2

AW139 Phase 8 – INAV

The first article in this series described the benefits and details of the AW139 Phase 8 Synthetic Vision System (SVS) on the Primary Flight Display (PFD). This article describes Honeywell’s enhanced multi-function Interactive Navigation display (INAV).

Honeywell’s helicopter INAV display makes its debut on the Phase 8 Multifunction Display (MFD) as shown in Figure 1. The INAV enhancements for Phase 8 offer the following:

  • Colorized display of terrain and water features
  • Additional map layers and other features: 
    • Field of View (FOV) lines showing the SVS FOV
    • Heliports
    • Airways
    • Terminal and Special Use Airspace
    • Geopolitical Boundaries
    • Cities
    • Major Roads
    • Minor Roads
    • Railways
    • Nearest Airport Dialog Box
    • Search Menu and Virtual Keyboard
    • Pan Scrolling


With INAV, situational awareness is greatly enhanced. The colorized map display offers a topographical view which correlates the field of view (FOV) to the SVS image on the PFD. The colorized map display also correlates the map topography to the Helicopter Terrain Avoidance and Warnings System (HTAWS) data, as well as man-made obstacle alerts and warnings, shown in Figure 1. The coloring of the surrounding terrain is based on vertical separation between the aircraft and the terrain.

Figure 1. INAV on the MFD and FOV depiction

The Aeronautical map layers menu, shown in Figure 2, adds Heliports, Airways, Terminal, and Special Use Airspace (SUA) to the previously available Navaids and Airports layer options. 

Figure 2. Aeronautical Map Layers Menu

Geopolitical map layers can be added to the map display via the MAP dropdown menu, as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3. Geopolitical Layers Menu

The “Nearest Airport” feature on the MFD provides a list of up to 10 nearest airports relative to the aircraft’s position, as depicted in Figure 4. With the cursor over the helicopter icon, pressing the enter button on the cursor control device (CCD) displays the menu shown in the left image of Figure 4. This menu enables the pilot to center the map on the helicopter icon, use the designator function, find the nearest airport, and more. Note, the designator function was previously a map dropdown menu item. This has changed for Phase 8.

Figure 4. Nearest Airport

Selecting the “Search” option from the menu dropdown (left image of Figure 4) allows the pilot to search for an object on the map. This search function brings up a virtual keyboard to facilitate filling out the search request (Figure 5).

Figure 5. Virtual Keyboard

Airport information is accessible by placing the cursor over the desired airport on the map and pressing enter on the CCD. The example in Figure 6 shows the information for Milan’s Malpensa Airport (LIMC).

Figure 6. Airport Information

Finally, Phase 8 INAV comes with a feature called “Pan Scrolling” which is a display mode allowing quicker scrolling on the PLAN page. Pan Scrolling will save time and reduce workload as the pilot seeks a location on the MFD outside of the currently displayed map area. It is activated by moving the cursor to the edge of the map display; white transparent tapes frame the map as shown in Figure 7. Pressing enter within the transparent border moves the map display in the direction of the arrow. 

Figure 7. PAN Scrolling

The Honeywell AW139 Phase 8 MFD enhancements provide a new and greatly improved level of information and situational awareness to the pilots. For more information about the Phase 8 upgrade for your aircraft, please contact Honeywell Flight Technical Services.


The Honeywell Flight Technical Services team can be reached at FTS@Honeywell.com.