Business aircraft cabins are generally not quiet. Not with the turbulent boundary-layer rush of air around the fuselage at Mach 0.85 and the whine of a couple of jet engines no great distance from the comfy chairs. Then there are the pumps, hydraulics, fans, gears, actuators, electric motors, worn bearings and air distribution through the metal ductwork, not to mention the occasional hum of the microwave and induction oven, the rattling of glasses and flatware in the galley and that giant sucking sound coming from the lavatory.
Active noise control
Headset maker Lightspeed Aviation (Booth No. C11137) is offering a new aviation headset with a suite of options that offer a “personal flying experience” the company abbreviates as “PFX.” The options include “acoustic response mapping” and “streaming quiet.”
“Acoustic response mapping” uses sound waves and advanced signal processing to measure the user’s ear size and shape, adapting audio to each pilot’s “unique auditory landscape.”
Sennheiser introduced its new S1 NoiseGard headset at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, completing the S1 model lineup, which includes the ANR S1 Digital introduced two years ago and the S1 Passive released last year. The three headsets share design features and, said Sennheiser’s Christian Pulm, “as demand changes, there’s an S1 for every scenario.”
Sennheiser’s updated active noise cancellation HMEC 26-2 headset adds comfort, noise protection and a higher sound pressure level to the HMEC 26. To improve the fit for a wider variety of pilots, Sennheiser redesigned the two-piece automatic headband so it can be opened another 20 degrees. Restricting folding of the ear cups to a 45-degree angle improves wearing stability. The microphone boom is made of a new steel that remains in the set position more securely, according to Sennheiser.
A new noise-cancelling headset introduced in April at the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany, is set to find a market in business and private aviation.
Middletown, R.I.-based Avid claims the headset “effectively reduces environmental external noise by 85 percent with a 20-decibel maximum noise attenuation.” Forty-millimeter speakers, said an Avid spokeswoman, “ensure crisp, clear sound and well defined bass.”
Sennheiser raised the stakes in the high-end, active-noise-reduction (ANR) headset game with the release of the S1 Digital at the EAA AirVenture show in Oshkosh, Wis. this week. Regular price for the S1 is $995 for the rest of this year, then $1,095. In August, Sennheiser will offer an optional XLR 3 power adapter and a 12-volt cigarette lighter adapter (including an extra female adapter) for the S1.
Fans of Bose’s noise-canceling headsets might want to stop by the company’s NBAA booth (No. 6068) to try out the A20. Introduced at the EAA AirVenture show in Oshkosh in July, the $1,095 (retail) headset incorporates some significant improvements from the original Bose Aviation Headset X, which pioneered noise-canceling for aviation headsets when it hit the market 12 years ago.
Bose introduced its long-awaited A20 noise-canceling headset at the EAA AirVenture show in Oshkosh in July and attendees immediately began snapping up the $1,095 (retail) headset. The A20 launch comes 12 years after Bose introduced the Aviation Headset X, spawning keen competition in the headset market and convincing pilots that noise-canceling plus passive sound deadening is the way to fly.
The UK’s Flybe has taken delivery of its 50th Bombardier Q400 airliner, equipped with the 1,000th installation of Ultra Electronics’ active noise control (ANC) system, the Canadian airframe maker announced today.
Broadband cabin noise, which can greatly fatigue passengers in even the most finely appointed business aircraft, could be a thing of the past if a new system from Britain’s Ultra Electronics and Qinetiq makes it to market. Early next year the partners are expecting to flight test new-generation hybrid active/passive mounts positioned between the fuselage and cabin trim panels.
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