QE Class Carriers' EIDs

 

QE Class Carriers' Electronic Information Displays pass major test milestone

In 2013 AGI supplied the Aircraft Carrier Alliance with twelve Electronic Information Displays (EIDs) as part of the Visual Landing Aid (VLA) system contract for the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers (HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales).

The displays, designed and built by Daktronics (formerly Data Display Co Ltd), each measuring 2m high by 4m wide, are to be positioned on the ships’ massive Island structures as well as in the hangar. The purpose of these units is to provide selected real-time flight operations information to pilots and flight personnel, particularly at landing spots and adjacent areas by day and night. Typical examples of the data that may be displayed include; ship’s heading, speed, latitude, longitude, flight deck wind speed and direction, launch and recovery times and aircraft deck movements.

This information is provided via an interface with BAE System’s Air Group Management Application (AGMA). The EIDs are also connected to the VLA system where ship’s personnel can use an AGI Operator Control Panel (OCD) to switch the displays On or Off, vary their brightness or send a “Crash on Deck” message at a press of a single button.

The interface between AGMA and the EID system was recently trialled by a joint team, including David Aston (QEC VLA Engineering Manager) and Andy Whiting (Programme Manager) from AGI, John Robinson (Commissioning Engineer) from Daktronics as well as personnel representing Thales and the BAE Mission Systems AGMA team. The test was carried out at the Wincanton-run ACA Central Warehouse.

The trial tested that the hardware and interfaces functioned correctly to prove the clear display of information on the EIDs. Despite some early difficulties during the set-up, the BAE team installed an updated version of the AGMA software resulting in various information, font sizes and styles being visible at different ranges of up to 90m. The trial was considered a complete success by all parties and now the whole team is preparing for installation and commissioning activity to begin on HMS Queen Elizabeth during 2016.

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