Helicopter Emergency Medical Service missions (HEMS) impose a high workload on pilots due to short preparation
time, operations in low level flight, and landings in unknown areas. The research project PILAS, a cooperation between
Eurocopter, Diehl Avionics, DLR, EADS, Euro Telematik, ESG, Jeppesen, the Universities of Darmstadt and Munich,
and funded by the German government, approached this problem by researching a pilot assistance system which supports
the pilots during all phases of flight.
The databases required for the specified helicopter missions include different types of topological and cultural data for
graphical display on the SVS system, AMDB data for operations at airports and helipads, and navigation data for IFR
segments. The most critical databases for the PILAS system however are highly accurate terrain and obstacle data. While
RTCA DO-276 specifies high accuracies and integrities only for the areas around airports, HEMS helicopters typically
operate outside of these controlled areas and thus require highly reliable terrain and obstacle data for their designated
response areas. This data has been generated by a LIDAR scan of the specified test region. Obstacles have been extracted
into a vector format.
This paper includes a short overview of the complete PILAS system and then focus on the generation of the required
high quality databases.