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Hearing problems and flying the S92

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Hearing problems and flying the S92

Old 16th Feb 2009, 12:43
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Hearing problems and flying the S92

Hello 92 drivers out there.
I am just wondering how many pilots that fly the 92 are suffering from hearing problems after a reasonable short time of flying the thing.
I have all the gadgets to try and protect my precious hearing(helmet.earpugs etc) but still after a full day of flying(6 hours),my ears are ringing and almost hurting.
How many of you suffer from the same problems

Cheers
rotorknight
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 16:29
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You are not the only one rotorknight.
I started getting problems with tinnitus almost immediately after I started flying the S92.
It has not gotten worse than what I can live with, but I have heard a couple of pilots are about to lose their medical due to tinnitus, and this makes me worried.
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 16:35
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Crikey now that worrys me!

What sort of problems you gonna get flying in something less exotic than a S76? like a MD500 (heard there pretty loud) all day or Robbies??

I would of thought S76 was pretty good with sound proofing etc... only assuming as never even got near one of the damn things!

Does make me wonder about Robbies and such, I mean you can see sunlight through the door joins in Robinsons so there hardly an advert for sound proofing.......
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 17:26
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I find the S92 uncomfortable after two flights/6 hours a day. I am using earplugs and DC headset, tried a helmet and noticed an improvement but is still not perfect. I tend to notice slight discomfort a few hours later in the evening, not painful, but just not right. Something needs to be done, but I don't Sikorsky are making much of an effort (I stand to be corrected).

TiP
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 20:14
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I haven't flown the 76 or the 500, but I have 1200 hrs or something in the R22, and it's nowhere near as noisy as the S 92.
The Norwegian aeromedical institute made a survey concerning noise and vibrations in helicopters at the norwegian sector, and the results are very alarming to us S92 pilots.
I just hope Sikorsky will take this problem seriously!
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 20:17
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...........pardon...........?
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 20:24
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The Norwegian aeromedical institute made a survey concerning noise and vibrations in helicopters at the norwegian sector
Where can you get hold of the results of the survey?

Thanks.
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 20:31
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Here it is!
Flymedisinsk Institutt
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 21:49
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Are there any other sources for cockpit noise levels in different helicopters apart from the one mentioned below? Anyone knows where I can get hold of it?

Gasaway DC. Noise levels in cockpits of aircraft during normal cruise and
considerations of auditory risk. Aviat Space Environ Med. 1986 Feb;57(2):103-12.
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Old 16th Feb 2009, 23:17
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Is it apparent where the highest noise levels are coming from? engines/transmission/main rotor etc.

Anyone notice any benefit with a Bose noise cancelling headset or similar?

Is it purely a factor of decibels or is vibration a factor as well?

Cheers,
bb
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 06:38
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Hi bb in ca,I think most of the noise comes from the rotor,cooling fans,and unfortunately I think a lot of the physical problems have to do with the vibrations as well.
I personally feel that I am sitting in front of the sound boxes at at a rock concert all the time.
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 06:53
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I use musicians earplugs - ER25. Brilliant if you can afford them - they've saved my hearing i'm sure (i fly non rotary -sorry!). If you think you are really getting a problem i can't recommend them more highly. I got them after seeing a thread a while back
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 07:01
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Interesting, I fly the HH-60 and haven't noticed any such dramatic noise problems.
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 07:50
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the problem is: heavy aircraft and only four blades.
The shockwave hitting the captain side is so strong, it feels like sitting close to a base drum.
ptcpuller
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 08:13
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Can't speak from a pilots seat but the back of the S-92 is quieter than a Black Hawk, Chinook or even an AS332, most of the cockpit noise comes from the cooling fans,and yes the rotors and vibs, have any of the european operators had the CSN done to put the hushkits on the fans yet? and if so any noticable drop in noise?
Still not done yet here in Oz.
The main problem here is heat stress for the crew.....of S-76's and AS332's, Super Puma crews comeback after 4-5 hrs in 35oC + looking like been in a sauna, 92 crews happy with aircon, though the supposed high comfort seat could do with somemore padding!
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 13:27
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Rcdude

That is the link to the website. The link to the article is here

Of course unless your Norwegian is up to scratch then you will have trouble reading it. But you can block translate roughly if you use this link to translate it.. happy reading ;-)

MD
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 20:10
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I can't read Norwegian but looking at the graphs it seems to have be 120 db at 16 Hz. (I could be wrong on that) That is quite loud.

Have any of the 92 pilots tried an ANC headset (like Bose, DC or Zulu)? They take out a lot of the low end frequencies to make the ride quieter. I know Bose has a 30 day free trial. It might be worth it. I put one in my MSA helmet and am really enjoying it.
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 22:50
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As far as I know ANC is not going to protect your hearing, it just cancels out the noise that you can hear. Lot of the sound waves enter through your skull and that is where a helmet is more efficient than a Headset.
I fly the AS350 with an MSA Gallet and sometimes I use earplugs to further lessen the noise.
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 23:02
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Having lost most of my hi-freq hearing and some of the normal voice range and both aggravated by a roaring case of Tinnitus.....do everything you can to protect your hearing. Be aggressive in taking what preventative measures you can.

Almost two thousand hours of Chinook time before the days of good helmets and earphones got me early on.

If you find yourself running out of volume control on the interphone panel....you just might want to have a really good hearing test done. You will probably find the Hi-Freq range is suffering a loss.

At least now I have a good excuse for ignoring the Missus!
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 23:16
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For what it's worth the US Army requires earplugs or CEP's under the flight helmet in the UH-60 because of the noise level. This is based on an occupational exposure to 85 db for 8 hours being considered hazardous. The noise level in the UH-60 is around 102 db. The SPH-4B and HGU-56 helmets reduce that to 90.6 db, and the SPH-4 reduces it to 95.1 db. The SPH-4/foam earplug combination reduces it to 70.4 db. The HGU-56 with CEP's reduces it to 71.1 db, and has the added advantage of making radio and ics easier to hear. Since the S-92 is kind of a cross between a Blackhawk and a CH-3E I would probably wear them were I flying one...
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