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November 1, 2015
DeSoto Heliport on the southern outskirts of Dallas is a testament to the adage, “If you build it, they will come.” SKY Helicopters developed the facility after a similar effort to the northeast in Garland, Texas, paid off. Now SKY is training FAA inspectors in the R44 at DeSoto.   Kevin Costner, the blackballed Chicago White Sox outfielder “Shoeless” Joe Jackson, the New York...
November 1, 2015
A range of pilots, from leisure and law enforcement ones to students, will realize benefits from the HeliSAS’ ability to reduce workload on Robinson’s R66 and R44. Photo by Frank Lombardi When it comes to flying helicopters, “simpler” does not necessarily mean “easier.” Most of the time it is quite the opposite. As helicopters grow into bigger machines with multiple...
November 1, 2015
 A Cypriot AgustaWestland AW139 departs the guided-missile destroyer USS Donald Cook during a joint search and rescue exercise Oct. 16-17 off the coast of Cyprus. CYPUSA-02/15 involved a simulated maritime accident that triggered activation of the Cyprus National SAR Plan NEARCHOS. The AW139 is assigned to the Cypriot Joint Rescue Coordination Center. SAR operations were conducted by helicopters of...
November 1, 2015
An aerospace manufacturing expert will take the helm of Bell Helicopter when Mitch Snyder takes over for John Garrison as president and CEO. An 11-year veteran of Bell, Snyder is currently executive vice president of military program. Previously, he served as vice president and program director for the Bell Boeing V-22. For much of his time at the company, Snyder has overseen a range of manufacturing and...
November 1, 2015
Lockheed Martin and United Technologies Corp said last month they expect to close by the end of the year on a $9 billion deal for the former to buy Sikorsky Aircraft from the latter, but the sale could be done any day now. S-97 Experimental Test Pilot Bill Fell briefs attendees of the Assn. of the U.S. Army annual convention in Washington Oct. 13 on the...
November 1, 2015
Afghan military leaders and MD Helicopters swapped claims last month about the performance of newly delivered armed MD-530F’s. A U.S. trooper provides security while an MD-530F takes off from Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan with an all-Afghan crew for a combat mission Sept. 27. Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force/ Staff Sgt. Sandra Welch They are not effective combat weapons in...
November 1, 2015
A U.S. plan to require registration of all unmanned aircraft systems, including small drones, offers the federal government better options for educating drone operators about their responsibilities in the air and enforcing their compliance with flight and airspace rules. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx on Oct. 19 said he had set up an industry/government task force to advise him by Nov. 20 on...
November 1, 2015
Alpine Helicopters co-founder Ted Jansen died at the age of 86 on Sep. 21. He also was an avid agricultural philanthropist. Jansen’s heavy involvement in agriculture and aviation stemmed from having been raised on a farm in Canada’s Porteeve area. In 1949, he moved to Alberta, where he worked on oil rigs, eventually becoming a head driller. He received a professional pilot’s license there...
November 1, 2015
S-76 operators inspected their aircraft after preliminary findings pointed toward a flight control failure in the Aug. 12 crash of a Bristow Group S-76...
November 1, 2015
Companies exhibiting at Helitech International 2015 in London logged some major orders at the Oct. 6-8 show. Airbus’ H160 full-scale mockup made its British debut at Helitech, where the manufacturer said the aircraft’s flight test program is proceeding, with the prototype having reached 175 kt and an altitude of 10,000 ft. The second prototype is planned to fly before year’s end. Photo...
November 1, 2015
An industry proposal for the U.S. FAA to streamline certification of single-engine instrument flight rule helicopters is stuck in a trade association review process. Four U.S. aviation associations spent much of the last year drafting the proposal. The groups—the General Aircraft Manufacturers Assn., AHS International, the Aircraft Electronics Assn. and Helicopter Assn. International—published the...
November 1, 2015
The U.S. Helicopter Safety Team wants to examine how heliports, weather reporting and low-level IFR infrastructure could be improved to better reduce rotorcraft accidents. It is working with FAA officials to organize a one-and-a-half-day meeting in Washington in mid-to-late February 2016 for high-level discussions of those issues and how to prioritize and pursue improvements. Like counterparts in Europe...
November 1, 2015
A highly respected international safety organization is expanding its focus on rotorcraft operations and reaching out to operators and associations to discuss areas of common interest and concern. The Flight Safety Foundation is refining a proven risk-standard set to make it particularly useful to companies that work in the offshore environment and the aviation operators that support them. It also is...
November 1, 2015
With the uncertainty of stopgap funding that could expire by year’s end and draconian budget cuts on the horizon, the U.S. Army is operating on the “ragged edge” of its capability, the service’s outgoing civilian chief said Oct. 12. In the six years John McHugh has served as Army secretary–the second longest tenure in the service’s history–he has not received a...
November 1, 2015
Airbus Helicopters offered an all-new design for Japan’s new UH-X utility military helicopter and has not given up on taking over development of that 150-aircraft program from the selected contractors. Airbus aims to convince Japan that its bid with Kawasaki to replace Bell/Fuji UH-1Js is still the best one, despite a contract award to competitors. Photo courtesy of Los688, Wikimedia Commons Japan...
November 1, 2015
  Carol Busch, as an associate appraiser with HeliValue$, has been elected secretary of the Wisconsin chapter of the American Society of Appraisers. Busch has been with HeliValue$ for 28 years. Branding Iron Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations promoted Sheila Reed to director of trade shows and events. Reed previously interned and also was a marketing coordinator at the company. Alain Gourven...
November 1, 2015
    Aero Dynamix receives STC for the S-76D Aero Dynamix now has STC approval (SR09650RC) for the Sikorsky S-76D. The NVG STC encompasses internal NVIS avionics modifications, edge-lit panels, overlays and all other aircraft illuminated components. These upgrades are designed to achieve a balanced cockpit that is optimized for both NVIS and daylight readability performance. Aero Dynamix is the...
October 19, 2015
A U.S. plan to require registration of “hobby” drones offers the federal government better options for educating drone operators about their responsibilities in the air and enforcing their compliance with flight and airspace rules. U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx today said he had set up an industry/government task force to advise him by Nov. 20 on how to set up the registry...
October 1, 2015
FARs not the Problem I have been a designated engineering representative (DER) for U.S. Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR) Part 27 and 29 (mechanical systems and powerplant) since 1980. In my experiences, I have seen many of the problems you described in your August editorial (“Getting the Rules Right,” R&WI, August 2015, page 4). For instance, you write of modified aircraft kept out of...
October 1, 2015
  A transposed rendering of helmets, from left to right: Gentex Corp.'s ALPHA Eagle, Evolution Helmets' EVO 252 and Gentex's HGU-56. Photos courtesy of Gentex Corp. and Helicopter Helmet, LLC In April 2015, personnel from the FAA’s Rotorcraft Directorate and its Civil Aerospace Medical Institute discussed the results of their analysis into the effects of post-crash fires during 125 fatal...
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