The Main Instrument Panel (MIP) outputs have now been successfully interfaced with SimStack.The boards are adaptable, allowing for all outputs (korry incandescent bulbs and the panel integral backlighting) on the simulator to be driven by a single Stack. The Flight Control Unit (FCU) potentiometers have also been wired to the analog input and allow for the dimming of the FCU backlighting and display. A total of one foundation board, and 3 output boards (56 outputs) were integrated and installed into the MIP chamber.
The Simulator backlighting is controlled by Pulse-Width Modulation (PWM) and is superior to analog signalling (previously implemented in the Simulator). Using PWM the backlighting is precise, and digitally adjusted to the limits of the original Airbus potentiometer. SimStack provides software which allows you to read the range of the pot – once these values are determine, you can incorporate them in your SimStack custom script. Noise of the potentiometer can also be suppressed with a anti-jitter function. Backlighting values are read directly from the simulator avionics software program and will follow the correct logic, switching on and off depending on the state of the aircraft bus supply.
The ProSim avionics program has very limited Bus gate options. There are no specific gates for the AC and DC buses. Fortunately SimStack can read the bus numerical values from ProSim and logically switch on/off outputs (thank you Mick for assistance with the implementation); with this feature the avionics of the aircraft can now be powered with the correct bus state. SimStack interfaces the different Airbus components found on the MIP and will also be used to drive the backlighting and power the avionics found in the pedestal.
More on the Airbus Bus equipment list and the pedestal wiring in a future post.