Textron Marine & Land Systems operating unit MillenWorks has obtained a contract from the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM) to design a pair of components for the Helicopter Crew Safety System (HCSS). Plans call for the work to take place over 18 months at the MillenWorks facility in Tustin, Calif. The company will work with RDECOM’s Aviation Applied Technology Directorate (AATD) to analyze components, design and construct two prototypes, and test/qualify the designs through laboratory testing. The objective of this stage of the HCSS development is to bolster its Technology Readiness Level (TRL) from a 4/5 to 6 as it continues toward production.
Impact test with the enhanced CRASH system (top) and legacy helicopter safety harness. Images courtesy of MillenWorks
MillenWorks will focus on refining the “active headrest and tensioning retractor system” for its continuously resettable aircrew safety harness (CRASH); developing the first stages of a fatigue reduction device; and testing an elastomer vibration dampening system for helicopter seats. General manager Paul PierAgostini notes that MillenWorks has contributed to the development of HCSS components over the past three years.
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