Curtiss-Wright unveils advanced cockpit voice/data recorder

Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions Press Release | January 19, 2023

Estimated reading time 7 minutes, 1 seconds.

Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a leading supplier of flight data recorder solutions engineered to succeed, today announced the industry’s first Cockpit Voice and Flight Data Recorder (CVFDR) to integrate 25-hour Cockpit Voice/Data Recording with data acquisition, a recorder independent power supply (RIPS) and a quick access recorder (QAR) all in a single compact and lightweight unit.

The Fortress Crash Survivable Recorder (Fortress CSR) is engineered for defense and commercial applications and is designed to the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) Technical Standard Order (TSO)-C155b. The 200-hour SD card-based integrated QAR function eliminates the need for a separate aircraft LRU, saving system power, weight, and cost while increasing system reliability. The QAR function supports flight data recording, providing the operator with the ability to transfer data to a ground station so that data can be rapidly analyzed by the Military Flight Operations Quality Assurance (MFOQA) ground station analysis software.

The Fortress Crash Survivable Recorder (Fortress CSR) is engineered for defense and commercial applications. CW Photo

The industry-leading Fortress CSR surpasses the requirements of the 2021 EASA minimum 25-hour cockpit voice-recording mandate (EUROCAE Class 6) for aircraft weighing over 27,000 kilograms. Based on Curtiss-Wright’s proven Fortress technology, the new CVFDR features user configurable data acquisition and is ideal for demanding flight data monitoring applications including incident event investigation, crash investigation, structural loads analysis, and safety initiatives such the U.S. Air Force’s MFOQA. It is also well suited for integrating contemporary flight data recording capabilities onto aircraft where none is currently fitted. 

Initially developed for use on the T-6 Texan II trainer aircraft used by the U.S. Navy and Air Force, the Fortress CSR provides an easily configurable aircraft/recorder interface that enables the Fortress CSR to be ported across multiple different aircraft platforms.

“Curtiss-Wright continues to lead the industry in bringing extended operation and greater survivability for flight recorders to the military aircraft market, supporting critical flight data monitoring applications such as incident event investigation, crash investigation, structural loads analysis, and MFOQA,” said Chris Wiltsey, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions division. “Our new Fortress crash survivable recorder 25-hour combined cockpit voice and flight data recorder expands the capabilities of a traditional flight recorder while significantly reducing size, weight, and power requirements. It builds on our long legacy of delivering cost-effective, lightweight and compact flight recorders that meet or exceed the latest regulations.”

Developing the Next Generation of Voice and Data Recorders

Curtiss-Wright’s Fortress CSR is a form-fit-function upgrade to the existing ½ ATR short flight recording system utilized on the T-6 Texan II. It protects parametric flight data and 3 channels of voice communications and 1 channel ambient cockpit sound to crash conditions in accordance with the ED-112A standard. In addition to serving as a combined CVR/FDR flight recorder, Fortress CSR also provides data acquisition and real time data processing used for post-flight analysis. Supported by the PGS Analysis ground replay system, the Fortress CSR is currently used in flight safety and pilot training programs, including the U.S. Air Force’s MFOQA, and applications such as Aircraft Structural Integrity (ASIP) and Aircraft Safety Program (ASAP). 

Curtiss-Wright has a long heritage in designing and manufacturing flight data recorders. Developed by the originator of the first combined cockpit voice/flight data recorder, this family of innovative recorders is designed to meet and exceed EUROCAE ED-112A, FAA TSO, UKTSO, and EASA ETSO requirements. The Fortress family of recorders is ideal for a wide range of aircraft platforms, including helicopters, airliners, UAVs, executive and military aircraft. Housed in a compact rugged unit, the new recorders are hard-mountable for fast, easy installation.

For additional information about Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions products, please visit www.curtisswrightds.comLinkedIn, and Twitter @CurtissWrightDS.

This press release was prepared and distributed by Curtiss-Wright.

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