Verification Testing of an AH-1S Wire Strike Protection System (WSPS)
ARMY AVIATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT COMMAND ST LOUIS MO
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The Applied Technology Laboratory conducted developmental and performance verification tests to determine the suitability for AH-1S application of a Wire Strike Protection System WSPS designed and fabricated by Bristol Aerospace Limited and Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc. The WSPS tested consisted of an upper cutter, a telescopic sight unit deflector, a chin cutter above the 20mm gun, a lower cutter, and a forward windshield deflector. Using the NASA-Langley Research Centers Impact Dynamics Research Facility, an AH-1S helicopter fitted with the WSPS was subjected to pendulum swing tests into the objective wire, which is a steel, seven-strand, 38-inch-diameter cable having an 11,500-pound tensile strength. The WSPS successfully demonstrated its capability to sever the objective wire in all tests, during which impact velocity, impact angle, aircraft pitch attitude, and aircraft impact area were varied. During the WSPS installation it was determined that some WSPS components were not necessary, and these were not necessary, and these were excluded from the system tested. During the test program it was concluded that a small cutter should be added to the system to prevent a wire from hanging up on the air data sensor boom however, timing did not permit the fabrication and test of such a component.
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