Is the U.S. Navy creating a superhero beneath the sea? Sort of.
The Navy has created an “Iron Man” helmet — although it’s not exactly all that similar to the one Tony Stark wears to fight bad guys on the big screen.
But this brand new diving helmet does have a lot of similarities: it’s meant for elite soldiers, it has a high-resolution heads-up display, it can receive and display images and video during missions, and divers can send video back to base, according to a Navy statement.
It’s called the Divers Augmented Vision Display (DAVD), and the big yellow helmet is more likely to make the user look like a minion than Iron Man. However, the capability it provides is in fact similar to that of the famous superhero, claimed Dennis Gallagher, an Underwater Systems Development Project Engineer with the Navy.
Divers will have a real-time visual display with sonar, a real-time topside view of the diver’s location, text messages, diagrams, photographs, and augmented reality videos. They don’t need pre-dive briefings to know what to look for — it’ll all show up in the helmet.
There are possible applications for first responders and the commercial diving community as well.
“By building this HUD directly inside the dive helmet instead of attaching a display on the outside, it can provide a capability similar to something from an ‘Ironman’ movie,” Gallagher commented. “You have everything you visually need right there within the helmet.
“We constantly engage with the operators; if there is a vision they have, we can make it happen,” Gallagher said. “By having this type of positive on-the-spot feedback, you know you’re going down the right road.”