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Evaluation of High Performance Aircrew Helmets and Oxygen Masks
DEFENCE AND CIVIL INST OF ENVIRONMENTALMEDICINE DOWNSVIEW (ONTARIO)
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The requirement for a new oxygen mask and helmet for use by Canadian Forces CF aircrew in the air combat maneuvering ACM role was indicated in 1978. Initial studies were conducted to identify shortcomings of the current assembly and to allow aircrew to rank design characteristics. Four helmet and four oxygen mask types were ultimately selected for comprehensive evaluation. A flight trial involving 48 aircrew flying primarily CF-5 and CF-104 aircraft was conducted at CFB Cold Lake in order to determine aircrew preferences for overall and specific designs, including the preference for single or dual visor. Maintenance implications of all test equipment were also evaluated. Equipment properties were determined in laboratory studies conducted primarily at DCIEM. It is concluded that the best assembly for aircrew of CF ACM aircraft is an extended PRK 37P helmet shell with thermal plastic liner, integrated chinnape strap, cutaway PRU 36P dual visor and modified type W oxygen mask. However, deficiencies related to the visor weight, centre of gravity and profile should be resolved. Author
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