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AT Systems Awarded Army AWR for In-Aircraft Helmet Mounted Degraded Visual Environment Visor Training System on CH47-F

(TULSA, Oklahoma — 10/4/2023) AT Systems, LLC., announced today that the company has received an airworthiness release (AWR) per Army Regulation (AR) 70-62 for the ATS electronic helmet mounted degraded visual environment (DVE) hood on CH-47F Chinook aircraft. The United States Army currently flies approximately 400 of these aircraft worldwide.

Tyson Phillips and Andre Lavallee, both CW4 National Guard combat veterans with over 20 years of service, own AT Systems, along with retired CW3 combat veteran and UH60 pilot Kevin Axton. Lavallee flies CH47 Chinooks, and Phillips flies UH60, which was awarded an AWR earlier this year. This AWR announcement comes a little after the 15th anniversary of a tragic crash caused by DVE-induced spatial disorientation (SD) in Southern Iraq on September 18, 2008.

"Being a CH-47 pilot myself, this one was big for me," said Lavallee. "My current unit, known as the Red River unit, lost a CH-47 in Iraq to DVE-induced SD. A National Guard crew flew the aircraft made up of Oklahoma and Texas soldiers. With Tyson in the Oklahoma Army National Guard and me in the Texas Army National Guard, providing this critical training to the cargo community is exciting for us.”

The CH-47F is known for its heavy-lifting capabilities and operates in extreme environments where DVE can be unpredictable. The ATS device trains pilots safely in simulated DVE conditions that can lead to SD. The FAA ACT ARC is the Air Carrier Training Aviation rulemaking committee. Their SD training recommendations state that in-aircraft devices provide the most realistic vestibular training. The combination of visual and vestibular is the most effective training method. The recommendations also say that in-aircraft training risks should be mitigated with automated training scenarios and built-in safeties to stop the training event if the aircraft exceeds preset limits. The ATS device meets all the committee's recommendations and standards.

"As Andre said, having the Army issue an AWR for our system on the CH-47F is very emotional,” said Phillips. “I was deployed when the' Fallen Angel,’ a downed aircraft, was announced. Our dedication to safety is driven by a desire never again to see our brothers and sisters perish in a DVE-induced SD accident. Although flying can be unpredictable if our device can prevent the loss of even one life, it is worth all the time and effort we have put into this system," said Phillips. “

The ATS Device is also available for civilian use and training. The AT System is distributed through Aviation Specialties Unlimited (ASU). AT Systems is continuing work on future AWRs to further its safety mission and prevent DVE-induced SD accidents.

About AT Systems:

AT Systems is a veteran-owned small business founded in 2016 by Andre Lavallee and Tyson Phillips to provide effective solutions to documented safety threats in helicopter operations. To learn more about AT Systems, call + 1 918-619-2141 or visit www.atsystemsllc.com.

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