Kopin Develops New OLED Display for F-35 Lightning II Helmet

Kopin Develops New OLED Display for F-35 Lightning II Helmet
U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Nikita Scheifele, an aircrew flight equipment apprentice with the 33rd Operational Support Squadron, 33rd Fighter Wing, inspects an F-35A Lightning II helmet at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida, Jan. 12, 2023. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Christian Corley)

Kopin has achieved a significant milestone in developing its next-generation Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) display technology for F-35 Lightning II multirole combat aircraft helmet-mounted display systems (HMDS).

The capability was developed to support the evolving requirements of the “world’s most advanced jet fighter,” such as augmented reality helmets.

“Much of the functionality is enabled through an advanced augmented reality (AR) helmet, which provides the pilot with critical flight, tactical, and sensor information for advanced situational awareness, precision, and safety,” a statement from Kopin said.

“The extensive functionality and extreme conditions require unique display technology.”

“Performance validation for the new OLED display is an important milestone in the production qualification of our display and confirms the exceptional performance of our OLED technology,” Kopin Business Development and Strategy Vice President Bill Maffucci stated.

“We believe our display is the only one that meets the higher performance requirements for this program because of its high dynamic range, and as a result the Kopin OLED is the only version moving forward into final qualification and full-rate production.”

“We believe the successful completion of customer testing will enable Kopin to continue as the sole provider of product displays for the F-35 HMDS through two generations of display technologies.”

The stealth combat aircraft requires high-performance display technology to support operations in complex and extremely contested scenarios.

The majority of the high functionality requirements are fulfilled by an advanced augmented reality helmet that provides critical flight, tactical as well as sensor information to the combat pilots for delivering necessary situational awareness, accuracy, and safety.

The company has been engaged in the development program for the production qualification of its microdisplays for HMDS.

It has already completed the full performance validation of the new OLED display and is now preparing for the next customer qualification and flight test phases.

Kopin is already working as the sole-source supplier as part of a multi-year contract to provide its high brightness active-matrix liquid-crystal display (AMLCDs) to equip F-35 HMDS.

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