Proceedings PaperEnvironmental qualification of the MH-53J color multifunction display
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In early 1994, Loral Federal Systems Owego (LFS-O) was awarded the MH-53J Interactive Defensive Avionics System/Multi-Mission Advanced Tactical Terminal (IDAS/MATT) upgrade program as prime contractor. The MH-53J is a USAF special operations helicopter providing infiltration and exfiltration mission capability in a low-slow manner. One element the upgrade was a new digital map system (DMS), which consists of a 2 GB digital memory unit (DMU), a digital map computer (DMC) and a 6' by 8' color multi-function display (CMFD). Although the original specification was written for a CRT, Loral determined that an active matrix liquid crystal display (AMLCD) based solution would better achieve the mission goals. The display upgrade was not intended to be a development program, but LFS-O found that there were very few solutions available near term, and chose to develop the display in Owego, making it their first military AMLCD production program. The CMFD is based on a commercial liquid crystal display manufactured by Display Technologies Incorporated (DTI), a joint venture of IBM and Toshiba. In March of 1995, just nine months after the design started, LFS-O delivered the first CMFD for systems integration. In December 1995, LFS-O successfully completed the environmental qualification of the CMFD. The extensive testing unearthed several initial deficiencies in the thermal, vibration, humidity salt fog and EMI design. This paper discusses these challenges and how they were overcome to achieve compliance with the USAF requirements.