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Arizona’s Luke Air Force Base issues new, upgraded fighter jet helmet

PHOENIX — Luke Air Force Base recently issued its first-ever unique mounting system for fighter jet helmets, according to a new press release.

The base issued its first Generation III F-35 Helmet Mounted Display System on Oct. 16, according to the release, to Norwegian Air Force Maj. Morten Hanche, 62nd Fighter Squadron training pilot.

The system includes upgrades such as improved night vision, optics and liquid-crystal displays.

Donald Guess with Rockwell Collins, the company that built and issued the system, said it has been in the works for a while.

“It’s Luke’s first,” he said in the press release. “It’s something that’s been coming for a while and something that all the pilots are going to want.”

The helmet, specially designed for each pilot, will combine his or hers field of vision with useful data such as the horizon, airspeed, altitude, and weapons status.

It weighs about five pounds and and will allow the F-35 to become the first tactical fighter jet in 50 years without a traditional display, according to the release.

“I think the helmet is going to be an important factor in enhancing my situational awareness,” Hanche said in the press release. “I don’t have to look around. I can glance with my eyes and get the info I need.”

The helmet will even grab feeds from the six cameras outside the jet, allowing for a 360-degree view of whatever is happening around the aircraft.

“With this helmet, (hitting your target is) going to be a lot more accurate than it used to be,” Hanche said in the press release.

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