If you got yer nose in the news lately, you’re well-acquainted with Tesla and Google’s attempts at automating personal travel — i.e. autopilot tech and self-driving cars. And, if you’re old enough, you remember back when television featured the innovation (then merely a fantasy) to help fictional criminals that “operated above the law.”
Betcha didn’t know that modern fighter jets have the same ability? Or did you?
In any event, it’s a good thing they do, because it — Auto-GCAS — saved the life of a pilot in training from certain death recently.
It kicked in when the aviator lost consciousness after pulling a tight turn and enduring way too much gravity.
This from Foxtrot Alpha:
Headed straight towards the ground at full afterburner, death seemed inevitable – until a new autopilot system pulled him out.
In the training flight video taken from the F-16’s Heads Up Display, originally spotted by Aviation Week, you can hear the pilot’s labored breathing as he executes a sharp turn, experiencing more than eight times the weight of gravity upon his body. Around 21 seconds in, the sharp turn ends as the pilot loses consciousness, the fighter jet aimlessly drifting with its nose increasing pointed straight at the ground.
The pilot fell down to just 4,370 feet before the plane began flying normally again, with the jet screaming nearly 13,000 feet towards the ground in less than 20 seconds. Sully 2 can be heard re-gaining consciousness as the instructor cancels the training scenario and tries to get everyone above 12,000 feet.
Check out the footage for yourself, below: