Helmet-mounted displays

Cockpit, radar, helmet-mounted display, and other avionics
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spazsinbad

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Unread post06 Dec 2013, 04:32

An oldie but a goldie:

RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post16 Dec 2013, 15:52

The physiological limits of humans has always posed a daunting challenge to virtual reality headsets. Fortunately, as detailed in this Wired article, the fellows responsible for the Oculus Rift seem to have realized what limit needs to be overcome to realize a practical headset: 20ms from input to eyes.

People familiar with the technical challenges with the F-35 helmet may have already realized that this poses an enormous technical challenge to the F-35 helmet program, which has been striving to achieve latencies below 100ms. I've heard that the helmet's computers are already maxed out, which raises some concerns about the fundamental, physiological viability of the helmet. Unless dramatic improvements in performance can be realized in software, avoiding motion sickness may be unavoidable without developing entirely new silicon for the F-35, or any other program looking to use augmented reality to see through their vehicle.
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Unread post16 Dec 2013, 21:04

'rotosequence' if you have 'heard' the maxed out capabilities is available in 'written' format then pointing to that reference would be nice. Yes latency is an issue which apparently has been overcome in the HMDS, which will soon morph into HMDS III. I'm struggling to find how gamers virtual reality applies to the HMDS? In any event if latency is still an issue I'll wager the company that claims to have overcome it will be contacted by all concerned. No?

As for motion sickness in the case of the F-35 I'll guess that pilots adjust quickly to the effect and also learn to adjust how rapidly they move their heads to minimise any difficulties. Flying an aircraft does make pilots motion sick. However they adjust. If they do not then they often do not become pilots. I think I have told the story earlier of an RAAF class mate in basic flying training in the Winjeel radial engine dual trainer who was always air sick. Eventually he found a solution - a peanut butter sandwich before flight. Perhaps this will be the solution for any motion sick F-35 pilots..... :devil:

....Who all otherwise (with only several highlighted in reports otherwise) report their liking for the HMDS now over some 10,000 hours. Is there a problem? No.

My own first Winjeel flight dual on a simple area recce under cumulus summer clouds on a hot summer day had me violently airsick flying straight and level looking out the window. After that - no problem. However due to other factors at other times I could feel queasy due to spatial disorientation - and again I may have been looking out the window under high positive or negative G or usually on instruments in cloud. Always the worst time was being in a tandem seat aircraft in back - not flying - when pilot in front would do something dramatic, without warning, causing equally dramatic bodily effects; which in the case of the equally dramatic 720 degree per second roll rate of the TA4G and all Skyhawks, meant some head banging on the canopy stuff - no matter what.

How do pilots overcome the occasional problem? Move head less dramatically if possible and concentrate on the real world which our F-35 pilot can do all the time. Is the computer gamer able to do that without taking off their VR helmet contraption?
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post16 Dec 2013, 22:28

spazsinbad wrote:I'm struggling to find how gamers virtual reality applies to the HMDS? In any event if latency is still an issue I'll wager the company that claims to have overcome it will be contacted by all concerned. No?


The relevance stems from pinpointing the worst case scenario timing threshold in which the delay between moving your head and seeing reality change accordingly becomes disorienting. The solutions chosen and implemented by the Oculus Rift's developers have minimal, if any, relevance to the F-35 program. Looking at the real world isn't an option for a virtual reality headset user, but in an ideal world, pilots wouldn't have to, either.
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Unread post16 Dec 2013, 23:27

I'm curious why you think this and why no reference to the maxed out business of the helmet computers? Thanks.
"...Looking at the real world isn't an option for a virtual reality headset user, but in an ideal world, pilots wouldn't have to, either."


Then IF:
"...The solutions chosen and implemented by the Oculus Rift's developers have minimal, if any, relevance to the F-35 program...."

Why bring it up?

Already we know the latency issues have been solved to the satisfaction of the program with HMDS III on the way; whilst HMDS II has been satisfactory all along.

And perhaps I have not explained.... Pilots adjust. Yes new pilots have issues with all kinds of new things (it seems the new F-16 jocks more than others). However they learn how to get the best for themselves. I'll guess that some new F-35 pilots feel more 'disorientated' than others, for more reasons that any latency issue. And I repeat from all reports they adjust; while they will have better hardware in HMDS III to better adjust - in a better future - in the F-35. Do you have any flight experience that I can speak towards which may help me explain? Otherwise further explain. Have you read this now very long thread?
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post18 Dec 2013, 05:04

Here is the HELMUT (oz parliament spellin') amongst other things in this VIDEO/text with some of the transcript below:
Nellis Airmen Hone F-35 Fighter Jet Skills 18 Dec 2013 By Brian Brennan, Reporter & Henry Takai, Photojournalist
"LAS VEGAS -- The sequester slashed tens of billions of defense dollars bringing testing of many new military technologies to a screeching halt.

Leaders at Nellis Air Force Base say they've felt the squeeze more than most, but say there are some programs still going strong, including the F-35.

"I remember the first time strapping into that thing and it's almost surreal," said Lt. Col. Derek J. O'Malley, commander, 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron.

Borrowing some of the best features of the F-16, F-18, A-10, and the hovering Marine Corps Harrier, the F-35 is fast, stealthy, and packs a punch.

"Fantastic to fly, very powerful, very maneuverable, easy to handle," Lt. Col O'Malley said.

His team is told what the jet should be able to do and their job is to push it to its limits.

"If you had an NFL football team with all the greatest players, if they didn't have a playbook they wouldn't be effective, so it's our job to take this platform and find out how we're going to use it," Lt. Col. O'Malley said.

Nellis is where they troubleshoot tactics. The squadron of 200 airmen began work on the F-35 earlier this year. They expect more delivered as the jet approaches war readiness.

Lt. Col. O'Malley says the jet is a leap forward in two ways. It's nearly invisible to radar and can almost think on its own. It computes data and suggests what the pilot should do.

"The F-35 would take all the pieces of the puzzle for me and right there in my display, in a very easy to access way, tell me what I'm fighting and how to counter it," he said.

The F-35 also requires a pilot to wear a new kind of helmet. It connects to cameras on the outside making it possible to melt away blind spots. The pilot can essentially to see through the walls of the aircraft.

The F-35 is expected to be fully operation Dec. 2016. Its main function will be air-to-ground attacks."

http://www.8newsnow.com/story/24245766/f-35

http://klas.images.worldnow.com/images/24245766_BG1.jpg
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http://klas.images.worldnow.com/images/24245766_BG2.jpg
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RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post22 Dec 2013, 04:56

An oldie but goldie (possibly this extract not on the forum - I'll check) from a very experienced F-35 and before test pilot (now retired)....

The Making of a Joint Strike Fighter Pilot - Welcome to the fifth generation. Art Tomassetti Air & Space magazine, November 2013
"...They [F-35s] have no head up displays. Instead, the displays have been integrated with our flight helmets; we now wear a helmet-mounted display (HMD) system. Tiny cameras inside the helmet project data on the visor. In addition to basic flight information—speed, altitude, attitude—the display continuously provides the status of targets, weapons, navigation, threat, and critical aircraft information. The helmet has a built-in night-vision camera and can also display infrared views from cameras mounted outside the aircraft, so when, for example, you look down at the floor of the cockpit, you see the ground below in the visor display.

Most legacy helmet-mounted displays are monocular. The F-35 HMD is binocular. With a monocular system, one eye is giving your brain information from outside the HMD. With a binocular system, your brain gets what your eyes are seeing in the HMD. The new technology has run into some problems, such as how fast the computers need to process an image and display it to the pilot. The time lag is measured in milliseconds; just how many is the key issue. If the delay is too long and your brain registers the difference, what you see in the display doesn’t match what you see in the real world. Because this is the first use of an advanced system, we have to learn what the human eye and brain can tolerate...."

http://www.airspacemag.com/military-avi ... 70321.html
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post22 Dec 2013, 09:06

"...Cockpit Mark Ayton...
...There is no head-up display (HUD) in the F-35; everything that would normally be placed on the glass is displayed on the helmet-mounted display visor focused in on infinity. On the right hand side of the cockpit is the side stick controller, which has a fair bit of movement and in the case of the F-35B STOVL variant so that the pilot can hover the aeroplane.

The throttle is on the left hand side and has a long linear throw rather than a rotary arc. This allows pilots of all physical sizes (from really small 104lb all the way up to 245lb) to fit and reach the controls, and sit comfortably in the aeroplane.

There are hardly any levers or switches in the cockpit, which minimizes the cockpit mass; only essentials are included such as the landing gear handle, emergency release, and engine start controls. All other control is through the touch screen or voice control. In the centre of the console is the standby fl ight display, which has a separate inertial navigation system and runs on battery power alone. The left hand side of the main display is also battery powered. If the engine fails, leaving only battery power, the left side of the display and the standby display both stay alive, providing the pilot with sufficient data to fly the aeroplane safely – but nothing else.

Helmet Mounted Display System Mark Ayton
The F-35 pilot uses the helmet-mounted display system (HMDS), which comprises a number of components. A display management computer that provides the interface from the aircraft and all of the tracker and display generation. The tracker system consists of the magnetic source installed in the cockpit and the sensor located on the helmet mounted display (HMD).

Weighing less than 4.5lb (2kg) including the oxygen mask, the HMD comprises the flight helmet and display unit, and provides the pilot with an ‘out of the canopy display’ to enhance situational awareness, targeting and tracking capability. The HMD also includes a day or night sensor to provide video for displaying and or recording. The HMD can present video source and symbology commanded by the aircraft’s mission computer but fusion of multiple sensor sources is not a requirement or function implemented in the system. Seven high-speed links including fibre optics and MIL-STD-1394 interfaces provide video and controls.

The HMD is capable of supporting three modes of operation: day symbology only, day video and symbology, and night video and symbology. These allow the pilot to continue using the night capability into the dawn and dusk with the HMD day/night camera. Raw data and symbology commands are received by the HMD, most of which are determined by mission system software.

The HMD provides accurate head orientation and position data to the mission computer. Data fusion and the pilot-vehicle interface automatically display air and surface targets on the HMD generated by any of the F-35 sensors. In addition the HMD uses line of sight commands to queue the radar. The fusion system controls and decides by priority which air-to-air and air-to-ground targets are displayed on the HMD.

The APG-81 active electronically scanned array radar sends all contacts to the integrated core processor, which tasks them to the mission system for processing and displays the screen on the HMD."

http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j ... 3336,d.aGc (PDF 12.5Mb)
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post28 Dec 2013, 01:13

Nowhere to hide in the F-35 FMS...

F-35 Pilots Train Using RGB Spectrum DGy JPEG2000 Codecs 27 Dec 2013
"...RGB Spectrum’s DGy digital recording and streaming technology is deployed in the F-35’s Full Mission Simulators (FMS). The system uses JPEG2000 compression to achieve visually lossless recording, providing results superior to other compression schemes by encoding every frame and the entire color spectrum.

DGy units are used in the F-35’s multiple pilot pods, recording everything the pilots observe during maneuvers, including avionics, out-the-window imagery, target acquisition, navigation and weapons control. Additional DGy units are in the Instructor’s Operator Station (IOS) and the After Action Review (AAR) facility.

Mission simulations are simultaneously recorded and streamed to DGy decoders throughout the simulator and to a RGB Spectrum Multicast Video Server (MVS) for central storage and recording management. Following the mission simulation, DGy codecs are used in the debriefing facility to replay the simulations for assessment of pilots' performance."

http://www.governmentvideo.com/article/ ... ecs/114890
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post22 Jan 2014, 05:55

Helmet should be ready for prime time for USMC IOC.


http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/ ... n-3-helmet

F-35 Pilots Will Begin Flying Improved 'Gen 3' Helmet

January 21, 2014, 3:35 PM

F-35 test pilots will begin flying this year with a third-generation helmet mounted display system (HMDS) that incorporates modifications to the earlier-generation display system, which the Pentagon has identified as an F-35 program risk. The fixes the fighter program developed for the “Gen 3” helmet system persuaded the Pentagon’s F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) to stop funding an alternate helmet-mounted display...

The night-vision acuity of the Gen 2 HMDS, which contains an ISIE (Intevac silicon imaging engine) 10 sensor for low-light-level detection, was the helmet system’s major deficiency, according to Kelly. An ISIE 11 sensor based on Intevac Photonics’ patented electron bombarded activated pixel sensor (EBAPS) technology brings the system’s night-vision acuity closer to the 20/20 vision NVGs can provide...

The Gen 2 helmet system’s latency, or response time at importing DAS imagery—measured in milliseconds—was not the problem testers thought it would be, Kelly said. Pilots just hadn’t had the opportunity to use the DAS sensor array during flight testing. Test pilots experienced display jitter in areas of the F-35 flight envelope that hadn’t been approved for training, he said. The program addressed the problem by integrating micro inertial measurement units and filtering algorithms in the HMDS to cancel out jitter effects. Pilots flew the fixes using a modified Gen 2 helmet.

“It’s still not perfect, but it’s the 95-percent solution and the major issue there is resolved,” Kelly said.
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post24 Mar 2014, 19:31

GAO JSF/F-35 Report to Congress March 2014 page 10-11

"...Helmet mounted display - provides flight data, targeting, and other sensor data to the pilot, and is integral to reducing pilot workload and achieving the F-35’s concept of operations. The original helmet mounted display encountered significant technical deficiencies, including display jitter, the undesired shaking of the visor display, and latency, the perceivable lag that occurs in transmitting sensor data, and did not meet warfighter requirements. The program made adjustments to the helmet design, including adding sensors to lessen the display jitter, and redesigning elements to minimize latency. The program tested these design changes in 2013 and found that most of the technical deficiencies had been adequately addressed, and that the helmet’s performance was sufficiently suitable to support Marine Corps initial operational capability in 2015. DOT&E and program test pilots noted that the current night vision camera continues to have problems. The program has identified a new camera that it believes will address those problems, but that camera has not been fully tested to verify its capabilities...."

SOURCE: http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/661842.pdf (1.6Mb)
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post24 Mar 2014, 23:15

spazsinbad wrote:[... The program tested these design changes in 2013 and found that most of the technical deficiencies had been adequately addressed, and that the helmet’s performance was sufficiently suitable to support Marine Corps initial operational capability in 2015. DOT&E and program test pilots noted that the current night vision camera continues to have problems. The program has identified a new camera that it believes will address those problems, but that camera has not been fully tested to verify its capabilities......]



...uh, now that Eglin has begun (last week) night flight training, might some assumptions be made, hmmm.................

Gums, .......are things noticeably noiser at nght (night ops) in the pan-handle?

Inquiring minds want to know? :D
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Unread post01 Apr 2014, 03:15

Assessments of Selected Weapon Programs
GAO-14-340SP: Published: Mar 31, 2014. Publicly Released: Mar 31, 2014.

"...F-35 Program | Technology Maturity
...The program recently chose to end development of an alternate helmet due to progress made on the original helmet design and work on development of a newer generation helmet....
...Program Office Comments
The program ended development of the alternate F-35 helmet as further testing indicated it is acceptable for USMC initial operating capability. Continued improvements will be made in the Gen III helmet. This decision includes a guarantee from industry to reduce the unit cost by 12 percent from previous estimates...."

SOURCE: http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/662184.pdf (11Mb)


2 Page F-35 SAR 31 Mar 2014 PDF reprinted (PRN) as a single page attached now.
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Unread post22 Apr 2014, 16:54

I guess this is the REAL SAR (up to Dec 2013) so the other one was something or other. More out of date reports than I can poke a stick at so here it is: [one day I'll get all this new fangled QUOTE stuff rite - aM I riTE? :devil: :bang: ]

Selected Acquisition Report (SAR) Dec 2013
F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft (F-35) As of FY 2015 President's Budget
Executive Summary...
“...One critical challenge the program made head way on in 2013 was the HMDS. For more than two years, the program worked with industry teammates to conduct dedicated flight tests and develop solutions to address the helmet's technical challenges. Those issues that hampered helmet function have been resolved, and the unit cost of the helmet system has decreased. As a result of testing and mitigation of the HMDS issues, the parallel development of an alternate helmet has been terminated. The current helmet has been deemed acceptable to support USMC IOC in 2015, and the Generation 3 helmet - to be introduced to the fleet in LRIP Lot 7 in 2016 - will meet program requirements to complete test and development in 2017. The Generation 3 helmet will include an improved night vision camera, new Liquid-Crystal Displays, automated alignment, and software improvements. The downselect to the current HMDS also resulted in a price guarantee that reduced the overall cost of the HMDS by 13 percent for the next five years....”

SOURCE: http://www.scribd.com/document_download ... ension=pdf (0.7Mb) (97 pages)
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Unread post26 Jun 2014, 02:48

[HMDS] Navy Contracts
24 Jun 2014
Lockheed Martin Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $75,980,553 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N00019-12-C-0004) for the procurement of 252 helmet mounted display systems [300K each?] in support of the F-35 Lightning II aircraft for the U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force, and the governments of Japan and Israel. This modification combines purchases for the U.S. Navy ($33,541,274; 44 percent); the U.S. Air Force ($28,938,439; 38 percent); international partners ($10,103,656; 13 percent); and the governments of Japan ($2,264,917; 3 percent) and Israel ($1,132,267; 2 percent). Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas, and is expected to be completed in July 2017. Fiscal 2012 and 2014 aircraft procurement (Navy and Air Force), international partner and foreign military sales funding in the amount of $75,980,553 is being obligated on this award, $30,806,571 of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

Lockheed Martin Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded an $8,942,741 cost-plus-incentive-fee modification to the previously awarded advance acquisition contract (N00019-11-C-0083) for the procurement of 14 repeatable release holdback bars and common sustainment support of the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter Low Rate Initial Production 6 aircraft. Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas (35 percent); El Segundo, California (25 percent); Warton, United Kingdom (20 percent); Orlando, Florida (10 percent); Nashua, New Hampshire (5 percent); and Baltimore, Maryland (5 percent), and is expected to be completed in March 2017. Fiscal 2012 aircraft procurement (Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force) and international partner funds in the amount of $8,942,742 will be obligated at time of award, $7,180,826 of which expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This modification combines purchases for the U.S. Air Force ($3,087,673; 34.5 percent); the U.S. Navy ($2,549,316; 28.5 percent); the U.S. Marine Corps ($1,543,837; 17.3 percent); and the international partners ($1,761,915; 19.7 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity."

Source: http://www.thebaynet.com/news/index.cfm ... y_ID/37815
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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