Australian pilot Russell Crane has received a provisional patent for the Green Orientation Light — or GO Light — a cockpit lighting system designed to solve the problem of spatial disorientation.
“The GO Light is a system of light fixtures that will give pilots a constant reference point of the horizon in their peripheral vision, helping them stay continually aware of the plane’s attitude,” Crane said.
“Presently, to verify orientation when there are no visual cues, the pilot has to focus on their small attitude indicator (AI) instrument. However, this verification requires the pilot firstly to recognize that they may be disorientated and actively focus their attention on the AI,” he said.
Research has shown that in accidents caused by spatial disorientation, the phenomenon went unrecognized by the pilot in up to 85% of occurrences.
“The GO Light mitigates unrecognized spatial disorientation and allows pilots more freedom to concentrate on their other instruments whilst maintaining an almost subconscious and accurate awareness of their attitude,” he explained.
If implemented by a manufacturer, the GO Light would be the first attitude indication instrument to provide a full illumination function that would bathe the cockpit in a field of light visible to pilots at all times, he noted.
The system’s design also includes an additional feature in which external lights on the fuselage would be replaced with pivoting lights to replicate the in-cockpit system outside the aircraft.
For more information: GO-light.com.au