F-35’s NEW HELMET NOT WHAT WAS PROMISED

Read this article from about 6 months ago: http://www.defensenews.com/story.php?i=5828022

So it would seem that Vision Systems original helmet that looked like it was right out of the latest Sci-Fi blockbuster was a bit of a dud and the F-35’s ground breaking distributive aperture electo-optical system that was to give the pilot 360′ of coverage day and night, in effect allowing the pilot to look right through the floor of the aircraft in infra-red/night vision mode, has experienced continuing issues. So what does all this mean? It means that Lockheed as stepped back with a less integrated helmet mounted display that will allow the F-35 still to get away without a HUD but will utilize traditional night vision goggles with all the flight info projected onto a pane of glass between the NVG tube and the pilot’s eye. This is no doubt an advanced helmet mounted sight, but cutting edge? Hardly. Without a fully integrated helmet, the F-35 will not take full advantage of its distributive aperture electro-optical system. It would seem that the DAS may be used more as a missile launch detection system than a fully integrated “visual sphere” of situational awareness for the pilot as originally planned.

Its to bad that the F-35’s fully integrated helmet will not be delivered with the jet as it is truly one of the most exciting and valuable capabilities the jet has to offer. Just another feather in the Lockheed’s cap for this underperforming, overpromised program.

The new helmet:

http://baesystems.com/Newsroom/NewsReleases/autoGen_111910143534.html

More on the F-35’s revolutionary DAS:

http://aviationintel.com/?p=2284

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