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Aviation Procedures and Information

1) GENERAL: The FireWatch aircraft are US Army, transfer of property Bell 209/AH-1F Cobra helicopters converted for use as an aerial supervisory platform. Several mission-enhancing technologies are installed to determine their applicability to USFS operations. The aircraft and crew will be assigned to a variety of missions to determine its suitability in the ATGS role, real-time infrared imagery projection, and air-to-ground video down-linking. Other missions may be identified and assumed as appropriate applications become apparent.

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Avalex Technologies Moving Map

With a 15-inch monitor for the Air Tactical Group Supervisor (ATGS) and a 9-inch monitor for the pilot, the Avalex Technologies moving map allows the ATGS and pilot to work together to create maps, drop markers on points of interest, and navigate.

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Products Offered

Digital IR Video Recording ~ Division(s)
Digital Color Video Recording ~ Division(s)
Map perimeter (shape files)
Points of interest (Marker Point file)
Map / Color / IR JPG files (points of interest)
Live video downlink
Live downlink to Rover in the field
Aerial Supervision - Air Attack / Helicopter Coordinator
Close in Tactical Support ~ Contact

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Digital Infrared and Color Video Recordings / Still Images

Using the Star Safire III Multiple Gimble Mounted EO/IR Systems model manufactured by FLIR Systems, the Firewatch Cobra helicopter multi-use platform is able to produce digital movies in both color and infrared (IR).

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GIS Mapping

The FireWatch Cobra team includes a Geographical Information Systems (GIS) technician capable of editing perimeter files and creating finished maps with various backgrounds such as street maps, aerial photos, topographic maps, and shaded relief. The GIS technician is also capable of processing the videos from the aircraft by copying the data, uploading the data to, or delivering the external USB drives to fire personnel.

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Tactical Support

Using the Rover and Data Van in conjunction with the aircraft on-board Remote Sensing Systems

Close in Firefighter Tactical Support / Aerial Supervision
The Rover Portable Viewing System
The FireWatch Data Van