Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

John F. Raquet, PhD


This thesis seeks to develop a Heads Up Display (HUD) presented on a Helmet Mounted Display (HMD), which presents a three-dimensional, graphical, predictive navigational reference to a paratrooper during a High Altitude, High Opening (HAHO) parachute jump. A Path Generating Algorithm (PGA) takes as input the Landing Zone's (LZ) location, the wind profile, and the paratrooper's parachute's performance characteristics, and returns a set of waypoints for the paratrooper to follow. The PGA attempts to maximize the distance that the paratrooper travels. The PGA's output is used to build a path to the LZ from a Release Point (RP). During the jump, GPS signals and an Inertial Measurement Unit functioning as a head tracker is used to determine the user's location and head orientation. The HUD presents a virtual "Tunnel in the Sky" for the paratrooper to navigate through. Due to hardware unavailability, the head tracker could not be implemented. Ground testing of the system sans the head tracker determined that subjects using the graphical HUD navigated a path slower than when compared to a baseline navigational reference. It is theorized that implementing the head tracker will make the HUD more efficient and better suited to navigation.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number