News | August 25, 2008

New Flight Optimization Software Saves Fuel And Mission Time

HUNTSVILLE, Ala.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A new software tool that allows pilots to easily adjust altitude settings based on a visual display of wind data is helping aviators to reduce fuel use and mission time.

Called Vertical Visual Optimizer (VVO), the software was developed by QinetiQ North America's Westar Aerospace & Defense unit for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and is compatible with U.S. Portable Flight Planning Software (PFPS). Applicable to both fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft, the pre-flight planning solution is now available to all U.S. military aviation platforms and those of allied nations.

VVO retrieves wind data at user-defined altitudes from defense weather sites and other sources and then graphically displays head and tail wind speeds on a desktop, laptop or knee-board computer so that pilots can quickly adjust altitude settings that take advantage of favorable winds.

The altitude adjustments and wind data can then be used in an aviator's mission planning system, resulting in an immediate update to the mission plan.

"With VVO, pilots can vary their route altitudes to achieve the optimal route based on fuel and time savings," said Lieutenant Colonel Dean Wild, Systems Manager, Australian Defence Force.

VVO is the newest component in Westar's offering of Confidence™, a suite of integrated mission planning software for aviation warfighters.

Comprised of Flight Performance Models (FPMs), Performance Planning Calculator (PPC#), Stores, Loading and Balance (SLAB) and other key elements, Confidence™ provides a holistic mission planning solution that ensures safety from take-off to landing by accurately predicting aircraft performance and configuration based on planned operating environments.

Westar's advanced mission planning software has been successfully fielded to the Army, Navy and Air Force branches of the ADF, and is currently in development for aviation organizations of the U.S. Departments of Defense and Homeland Security.

About Westar:
Westar Aerospace & Defense, part of the Systems Engineering Group (SEG) of QinetiQ North America, is a leading U.S. defense contractor that provides high-value engineering, software solutions, logistics information management, flight training, and IT technical support services to the U.S. Department of Defense, allied governments and select commercial customers. SEG supports its customers with the knowledge and expertise of more than 2,400 employees from 50-plus locations worldwide.

About QinetiQ North America:
QinetiQ (pronounced "kinetic") North America is a family of companies that comprise more than 6,000 engineers, scientists and technologists working in partnership with customers to develop technology solutions to meet the challenges of national defense, homeland security and information access. QinetiQ North America is part of QinetiQ Group, plc (QQ.LSE), one of the world's leading defense and security technology companies.

For more information on VVO and Confidence® mission planning solutions for aviation warfighters, visit:

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