Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Cirrus launches Safe Return, the automatic emergency landing system

Can you imagine that a plane in an emergency can land only after activating a button? The Cirrus Vision Jet can make it happen.

A new step towards further improving the industry’s air safety has been taken by the Cirrus Aircraft, the world leader in personal aviation. It has introduced a new and innovative security solution called Safe Return. This is a revolutionary automatic emergency landing system that allows passengers of the Vision Jet aircraft to land at just the touch of a single button. Without any human intervention!

Once activated, the Safe Return system takes control of the aircraft and transforms the Vision Jet into an autonomous aircraft that flies to the nearest airport suitable for landing, communicates with air traffic control, lands, and brings the aircraft safely to a complete stop.

One-touch Safe Return button is accessible to passengers.
One-touch Safe Return button is accessible to passengers. Credit: Cirrus Aviation

Our mission is to make personal aviation more accessible by continuing to improve passenger comfort and safety,” said Zean Nielsen, Cirrus Aircraft Chief Executive Officer. “Safe Return delivers the next step towards autonomous flight, bringing a new level of confidence to the overall flying experience by providing the ultimate level of safety and control to passengers. Together, with the Cirrus Airframe Parachute System® (CAPS®), we have once again set a new standard for safety in personal air travel.

How does the system work?

Once the passenger press the button, the autonomous system analyzes the data, including fuel levels, terrain, and weather, to determine the optimal airport for landing and simultaneously begins communication with Air Traffic Control (ATC). Utilizing all available aircraft data streams, Safe Return safely navigates the Vision Jet to the identified airport. Autothrottle system, launched earlier this year in the new Vision Jet G2, works with the automatic flight control system to manage the jet’s speed, flight path and altitude. Safe Return then automatically lowers the flaps and landing gear on the final approach.

Once the jet is safely on the ground, and coming to a complete stop, it allows passengers to exit the aircraft. During the entire process, the system remains in constant communication with the ATC bodies. When activated, in fact, the Safe Return immediately transmits an emergency message to the ATC. The ATC is automatically updated at regular intervals on the position of the aircraft, on the emergency situation, and on the intended landing destination.

The American company expects to begin the delivery of Vision Jets equipped with Safe Return in early 2020.