Measurements of Attenuation and Talk-through Amplification for Two Communications Headset Candidates for the Helmet Electronics and Display System-Upgradeable Protection (HEaDS-UP) Army Technology Objective (ATO)

Report No. ARL-TR-5841
Authors: Angelique A. Scharine and Mary S. Binseel
Date/Pages: December 2011; 28 pages
Abstract: Two tactical communication and protection systems (TCAPS) prototypes were developed for the Helmet Electronics and Display System-Upgradeable Protection (HEaDS-UP) Army Technology Objective (ATO). Attenuation measurements were made for the candidate systems in each of three configurations: in-the-ear (ITE), circumaural, and both (double). Features in the data obtained with the KEMAR auditory test fixture led to additional measurement using a G.R.A.S. hearing protector test fixture type 45CA, but neither set of measurements showed significant differences between the two candidates; in the second set of measurements, two Combat Vehicle Crewmember (CVC) headset variants were included for comparison purposes. The ITE configuration of the candidate systems compared well with that of the CVC in terms of attenuation and reliability. Measurements were also made of the noise levels transmitted by the talk-through microphones. The levels of sound measured for steady-state noise were well above 85 dB A-wtd, suggesting that the trigger mechanism for transmission shut-off is not triggered by steady-state noise and that users need to be trained to shut off the talk-through when exposed to vehicle and other steady-state noise for longer periods of time.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: December 1, 2011