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GE’s MAGIC1 Rugged Display Computer Chosen By Agusta Westland To Enable Safer Search And Rescue Helicopter Missions

GE Intelligent Platforms (NYSE: GE) today announced that it had received orders from Agusta Westland of Italy for GE’s MAGIC1 Rugged Display Computer. The MAGIC1 will be part of Agusta Westland’s OPLS (Obstacle Proximity LIDAR system) which the company will offer on helicopters destined for search and rescue (SAR) deployment.

Helicopters operating in SAR operations are often required to fly near obstacles - trees, buildings and so on - in daylight or darkness and in adverse conditions. Agusta Westland wanted to provide the pilot with a sophisticated collision avoidance system that would aid the pilot by indicating the distance of the helicopter from these obstacles.

The OPLS is based on a set of laser sensors, the data from which are collected by GE’s MAGIC1 and displayed in the cockpit. OPLS, including the MAGIC1, was first installed in Agusta Westland’s AW139 helicopter, and the company plans to adapt the kit in order to be able to offer it on other helicopters used in SAR applications.

“The MAGIC1 offered Agusta Westland a number of compelling benefits,” said Simon Collins, Product Manager, GE Intelligent Platforms. “It is a proven, pre-configured solution that can be easily integrated onboard a helicopter with minimal integration effort and cost. The MAGIC1’s high performance enables it to allow pilots to make timely, accurate flight path decisions, while its compactness and low weight mean that it has minimal impact on the helicopter’s operating characteristics. It is also rugged, which means that it can withstand the rigors and harsh environment that are typical of search and rescue deployments.”

The 3U VPX MAGIC1 Rugged Display Computer combines Intel® Core™ i7 CPU technology with NVIDIA®'s EXK107 GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) to deliver unprecedented levels of performance for rugged applications. When deployed as a Display Computer, the MAGIC1 supports the industry’s most demanding video and image applications, taking advantage of the significant processing power available from GPGPU (General Purpose computing on Graphics Processing Units) computing.

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