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Sunday, January 16, 2011

New RAF Helmet: Shoot down enemy jets by looking at them.



The ultimate death stare: 

New RAF helmet allows pilots to shoot down enemy jets by looking at them.

 It looks no more high-tech than any other fighter pilot helmet. But this £250,000 headset allows RAF pilots to shoot down planes simply by looking at them. The ‘Striker’ Integrated Display Helmet marks one of the biggest leaps forward in attack capabilities in military history.

How it works: 

Pilot can glance at an aircraft he wants to fire a missile at by using his mind

The £250,000 'Striker' Integrated Display Helmet allows RAF pilots to shoot down planes simply by looking at them. As long as the enemy's aircraft is in sight, a missile can be directed towards it. All a pilot has to do is glance at an enemy aircraft and then steer a missile towards it with his, or her, mind. Targets pop-up in the pilot's visor, at which point he can select by voice command and fire. As long as the enemy's aircraft is in sight - whether that be below, above or to either side - a missile can be directed towards it.

The breakthrough brings to an end the century-old concept of the aerial dogfight, in which one plane must be directly behind another in order to hit it with firepower. The innovative two-part helmet design has been co-developed with aircrew and logistic support engineering participation. It works by using tiny optical sensors in the Striker helmet, which are then picked up by further sensors in the cockpit.


 
In flight:

Nature of aerial combat.

The helmet has undergone extensive testing in RAF Typhoon aircraft. 'It means the end of the dogfight,' leading pilot Mark Bowman told The Sun. 'Traditionally you have to get behind an aircraft to lock on. With this, I steer the weapons with my head.' The helmet has been developed by Britain's BAE Systems and has been subjected to extensive flight trials in RAF Typhoon planes.

A spokesperson for BAE said: 'An advanced optical head tracker is integrated into the helmet system to provide a high accuracy/low latency solution for low, medium, and high altitude operations. 'While the system has been designed for the Eurofighter Typhoon, its modular design can be applied to all platforms, both rotary and fixed wing.'

EF2000 Typhoon


Rotary Wing Platform:

BAE Systems’ Striker helmet-mounted display is based on the company’s unique, two-part helmet design. It provides comfort, protection, and helmet stability for fixed- and rotary-wing platforms. The helmet design also has been used on the Eurofighter and Gripen HMD programs, and is now in production for customers in the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spain, and other countries.The rotary-wing helmet has been updated to include high-definition, solid-state displays and interfaces for high-resolution night vision cameras.

The Striker integrated display helmet system provides users with critical “headsup, eyes-out” situational awareness throughout the mission profile and 24-hour, all-weather, capability- enabling symbology and sensor imagery. The HMD features a binocular, 40 x 30-degree field of view with a real-world overlay of flight parameters, sensor video, and weapon and sensor targeting information.



The object of their collective excitement is the `Striker' Integrated Display Helmet. Among other features, the helmet allows a pilot to steer the flight of a missile with the help of an optical head tracking system.
When targets appear in the visor, a pilot can use a voice command to fire and then direct towards a target as long as it remains within sight. "Traditionally you have to get behind an aircraft to lock on. With this, I steer the weapons with my head," according to test pilot Mark Bowman.

Early fanfare and hype surround the introduction of any new weapons system - and this one is no different. Shoot-to-look technology has been around for several years. For instance, the U.S.'s Apache has long featured a helmet mounted display so that the helicopter's gun tracks a pilot's head movements.