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Used on Army’s ARH
TopOwl flies through tests for new
The Thales TopOwl flew through its latest series of tests for extreme-condition applications,
according to the company confirming it as the leading Helmet Mounted Sight Display
system of its kind, with performance continuously honed to the highest level possible.
As part of the successfully completed series of flight tests, TopOwl was connected to latest
technology sensors to demonstrate that it meets increasingly rigorous demands for safe flight
operations in degraded visual environments such as night, brownout, and whiteout.
TopOwl displayed high resolution FLIR, symbology, and Intensified Images onboard several
new generation rotorcraft, including a limited evaluation on the Apache AH-64D.
These test campaigns demonstrated that TopOwl - currently deployed in Afghanistan onboard
international helicopter platforms - allows pilots to fly “head-up and eyes-out” by day or night
and in extreme conditions, thereby strongly contributing to safety.
TopOwl enables pilots to display both high resolution FLIR and high performance night vision
images right in front of their eyes, and to switch easily and instantaneously between both.
The Aviation Applied Technology Directorate (AATD) recently completed a partial evaluation
of the Thales TopOwl Helmet Mounted Sight and Display system on an AH-64D Apache.
While the scope of the integration and subsequent testing was limited, the Experimental Test
pilots were enthusiastic about the system performance, with comments such as: “unusually
great FLIR image” and “IMAX effect”, together with “great depth of field in night vision mode”,
and “it reduces pilot’s workload and fatigue”. Both the binocular visor projected image and the
great comfort of the helmet, which was found to be light and well balanced, were well received
by the pilots.
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