Revision Military, a leading producer of protective eyewear for military, law enforcement, and civilian users, has recently completed the delivery of 50 prototype micro heads-up display systems to the U.S. Air Force’s 129th Rescue Squadron as part of an Air Force program to explore new technologies. The Revision Smart Eyewear powered by Ciye enhances situational awareness and mission effectiveness while offering state-of-the art ballistic eye protection.
The Revision Smart Eyewear powered by Ciye HUD system, is based on commercially available technology developed by Ciye, a U.S.-based leader in fitness tracking technology. The U.S. Air Force provided development funding for the device through the Air Force Research Laboratory’s (AFRL) AFWERX small business innovation research grant program.
The goal in creating this system is to give the wearer access to essential tactical information in real-time without overwhelming them, all while providing ballistic eye protection. The smart eyewear is based on Revision’s longstanding expertise in providing combat-proven solutions that protect our men and women in uniform.
Amy Coyne, Revision CEO
While wearing the 1.9-ounce smart eyewear, the user looks up and to the left to see an array of user-selectable data fields related to navigation. The display is only visible when needed, leaving the wearer’s entire field of view free from distracting information.
The display is not in the user’s field of view, giving the wearer access to information without compromising situational awareness. A critical information need for the military is ‘where am I, and where am I going.’ Normally, you’d have to stop what you’re doing and consult a map or device to figure that out but with our device navigation and movement are seamless.
Yuri Zhovnirovsky. Ciye CEO
Once the user selects and downloads a route from the Android or iOS smartphone app using a Bluetooth connection, the unit then runs autonomously, displaying route direction, moving time, and distance data that’s dynamically updated in real-time in three visible fields.
The smart eyewear contains a ballistic lens, an integrated display, GPS and antenna, a compass, accelerometer, gyroscope, and a 12-hour battery. The unit is semi-autonomous, only requiring a smartphone app to set navigation waypoints and configure the display. The battery is rechargeable in 30 minutes using a common USB power bank. The entire system is contained within the footprint of a set of spectacles that are designed to integrate with existing helmets and communication headgear.
As part of the Air Force Program trials, search and rescue personnel used the smart eyewear preloaded with mission navigation waypoints before their aircraft took off. Once on the ground, rescuers used the navigation HUD to guide them directly to their objective without using critical time in the landing zone to consult handheld navigation aids. An arrow pointing to the waypoint or objective, along with time and distance to the objective was displayed and updated in real-time as the wearer moved. Without needing to reference maps or tablets, the personnel had greater situational awareness and were able to move more efficiently through complex terrain.
Now that this initial field trial with the Air Force is complete, Revision and CIYE will continue to evolve the product into a state of operational readiness, identify stakeholders and further define end user requirements.