Orbit Integrated 3D Audio into Elbit’s Smart Helmet
11 July, 2018
The combination of audio and visual cues allows pilots to pinpoint a threat more rapidly, in the space surrounding the aircraft, while radio separation improves situational awareness
Orbit Communications Systems from Netnia, Israel, successfully integrated its 3D Audio system into Elbit Systems’ Helmet Mounted Display (HMD). Elbit’s HMD displays flight data, sensors and 3D location-based information, allows pilots to slave the aircraft’s sensors and missiles simply by looking at the target, and similarly, enable aircraft sensors and other relevant information to be spatially presented.
The integration of 3D Audio into the HMD provides directional audio cues to ground and air threats in full correlation to the visual cues on the visor. The combination of audio and visual cues allows pilots to pinpoint a threat more rapidly, in the space surrounding the aircraft, while radio separation improves situational awareness. Eitan Livneh, President & CEO of Orbit, said he believes that 3D Audio “will become a standard feature in cockpits of the future.”
This is a dramatic step for Orbit, since Elbit is considered a global leader in the HMDS field. This product has been a key growth engine for the company and is currently operational in over 11,000 fixed and rotary wing aircraft in approximately 30 countries.
From Orion to the HMD
The 3D Audio technology was developed as part of Orion, Orbit’s airborne audio management system. Powered by a patented Dual IP Ring, Orion provides 3D Audio, Adaptive Noise Reduction and Voice-Activated Detection as standard features. It was developed to answer the needs of Military an Civilian wide body aircrafts.
Dual IP Ring is a patented topology in which Communication Control Panels (CCPs) are cascaded in an Ethernet/AFDX Dual IP Ring. The CCP is comprised of an operator panel and a communications switch, eliminating the need for a central communications unit. Each CCP adds capabilities and dedicated processing power per crew member in an incremental manner. This allows for implementation of processor-intensive algorithms such as 3D Audio, Adaptive Noise Reduction and Voice-Activated Detection.
Orion’s multiple Ethernet ports can interface with avionics systems in many different ways, including: Software-Defined Radio (SDR), Operation via touchscreen or third-party control panels using Ethernet API, Radar Warning Receiver (RWR), Triggering of voice messages and warning tones and Mission computers.