A customer called to ask, ‘what type of light and which color would work best in a glass cockpit?’
The short answer is soft white – unless your flying with night vision goggles, in which NIVIS White (best) or NVIS Green.
The real issue is glare. Included is a picture of the GNS 750 and one installed in a C206. The C206 is a good example of mixed cockpit, some glass, some standard instruments. Most of the controls and bezels though still require additional lighting. The glass itself has a great anti-glare coating, and the new displays are great for daylight reading, so a FLITELite set to moderate intensity is not going to challenge the display or reflect in any appreciable manner. This is also due to the filter we use, and the soft white LED we select that is cooler than daylight.
Consider the use of paper charts – still using them? What about circuit breakers when things go dark, or even in when the don’t, night time can make them though to identify. Placards, standby gauges, overheads, and controls (especially sticks that have multiple buttons) are places where even glass cockpits need some extra light.
We were recently building “Classic” NVIS GREEN lip lights – with the new programming developed for a special operations unit (ten minute auto-off, push button, dimming through the button, brightness memory, low battery indicator). We plan on renaming this product line the NEXTGEN FLITELite. This programming maximizes the utility of the lights – low light signature, one button control, smart features, and NVIS compatibility. Just received a great review from a happy Air Force unit at Davis Monthan AFB.
We had a professional photographer capture some images for a new production manual and quality assurance guide. One of the steps closer to the end of the process – welding the case and lid together/vulcanizing the wire harness. Updating the production manual is not the sexiest thing to work on, but making sure that each new change, and all the nuance required is captured consistently for our customers.