Littleton, Colorado-based TerraMetrics won an Air Force Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I contract to investigate and develop a synthetic vision system (SVS) for helicopter pilots. Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed. TerraMetrics is collaborating with Boeing and Rockwell Collins on the SBIR effort. The SVS will provide helicopter pilots with an accurate, 3D terrain model of their physical landing location during zero-visibility conditions in dusty, desert areas such as Iraq and Afghanistan. Synthetic vision systems that combine stored terrain and obstacle feature data with sensor-fed camera imagery typically require extensive pre-flight data preparation and loading procedures. During brownouts, these systems revert to pre-loaded data and may omit critical information about vehicles and obstacle changes, TerraMetrics said. The technology under investigation eliminates data preparation requirements and the potential for dangerous information omissions.