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August 1, 2015
A U.S. judge has blocked a N.Y. beach community’s bid to limit helicopter flights to once per week, but upheld new local laws imposing nighttime flight curfews. Judge Joanna Seybert’s June 26 preliminary injunction called the town of East Hampton’s once-a-week limit...
August 1, 2015
About 150 new Bell Helicopter 412s are to join the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) fleet starting in 2021. Japan’s Ministry of Defense said July 17 that it had selected Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) to develop the 412 variant with Bell as a utility helicopter to replace the JGSDF’s aging Bell UH-1Js. In winning the $3 billion contract, FHI prevailed over Kawasaki Heavy...
August 1, 2015
ASU Reveals New N16HT Pro (Night Pro) Vision System At the Airborne Law Enforcement Association 2015 Expo in Houston, Aviation Specialties Unlimited (ASU) revealed its new patent-pending N16HT Pro system. N16HT Pro is a wireless imaging, recording and disseminating night-vision system used during low light-level conditions. The ASU N16HT Pro fully integrates and compactly couples a GoPro® camera with...
August 1, 2015
Colorado Heli-Ops already has begun incorporating risk management and other elements of the new standards in its training course outlines. Here, CFI Tyson Bolduc performs a discovery flight for a new student.  Photo by Dennis Pierce, courtesy of Colorado Heli-Ops Any good CFI will tell you that the secret to performing a stellar takeoff to a hover is ascending to a stable two-to-five-foot height above...
August 1, 2015
Through the Sikorsky acquisition, Lockheed Martin seeks to bolster its defense market position as revenue growth slows from programs like the multi-national, multi-service F-35, shown here during tests of the short-takeoff/vertical-landing F-35B variant at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. June 19, 2015. Lockheed Martin Photo by Andy Wolfe   Lockheed Martin’s proposed multi-billion purchase...
August 1, 2015
Metro Aviation’s Helicopter Flight Training Center is equipped with two high-end FlightSafety International simulators, within which pilots from throughout the industry are invited to sharpen their life-saving skills. Pictured here is one configured as an Airbus AS350. Photo courtesy of Metro Aviation Positive transfer of knowledge—yes, it sounds overly technical, and no, I’m not talking...
August 1, 2015
Flying over terrain like this isn’t the time to wonder if anybody knows where you are or when to start looking for you. Always ensure someone does know. Photo courtesy of Mike Hangge Becoming a pilot takes months of training in performance planning, meteorology, airspace, flight maneuvers and emergency procedures. Years are spent perfecting aviation skills and forming rote memorization into the...
August 1, 2015
By Pat Gray Unmanned aerial systems (UAS) are operating now offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. I’m sure this is not a surprise to many people who make their living dealing with the extraction of oil and gas from under the sea. Innovation is a constant in this industry. That is reflected in the thousands of oil field patents issued and their millionaire owners. At present, there are two primary UAS...
August 1, 2015
By Terry Terrell My EMS base changed aircraft recently. We had, during the very early 2000s, bought three consecutively produced Eurocopter AS350B2 AStars. These were ordered as sequential deliveries out of Grand Prairie, Texas, and we flight tested and flew them home green. We completed avionics installations, cabin outfitting and painting ourselves. It turns out that these AStars were destined to provide...
August 1, 2015
By Frank Lombardi It’s been said that once you develop the stick-and-rudder skills necessary to fly the machine, being a good helicopter pilot is all about good decision-making and risk management. I agree wholeheartedly and try to practice this at all times. The greatest pilots have the best situational awareness. What they learn is added to a mental database that, over time, becomes wisdom...
July 1, 2015
Arthur J. Negrette Operational control. Ask five aviation managers (be they chief pilots, operations directors or business owners) and you will get 10 different definitions of the term within the context of flight operations. Though the concept of operational control has been embedded in the FARs for decades, the FAA’s recent interest in it can be traced to high-profile investigations. One set...
July 1, 2015
Ernie Stephens Let’s start with Col. Harland Sanders, the late, white-haired gentleman whose likeness has appeared on every bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken for decades. Did you notice when his former enterprise shortened its name to KFC? Did you catch the change from “fries” to “potato wedges”? In the 1980s, Tony the Tiger, the mascot for Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, went...
July 1, 2015
Mike Hangge This month, Rotor & Wing International is introducing a column to discuss the issues military veterans face when transitioning to the civilian work force. This topic is important to us because we recognize the needs of our heroic veterans, and understand the difficulties of finding quality employees for great civilian companies. Each year, more than a quarter of a million veterans depart...
July 1, 2015
A DJI Phantom 2 Vision quadcopter. Photo from ThinkStock Advocates for greater use of unmanned aerial systems in the U.S. insist that UASs can perform the same missions as aircraft with pilots aboard just as safely and reliably, but at much lower costs. They argue that UASs often can be safer by sparing pilots from risking their lives unnecessarily in dangerous missions that might be better conducted...
July 1, 2015
An R66 Turbine Marine. Photo courtesy of Robinson Helicopter Company Helicopter operators, manufacturers and university researchers are collaborating in an FAA-sponsored project to lay a foundation for broader use of flight data monitoring (FDM)—and the safety management systems it supports—to improve rotorcraft safety. I belong to a university research team from The Florida Institute of...
July 1, 2015
Question of the Month: What do you consider to be the last successful commercial helicopter put into service by Bell? Let us know, and look for responses in a future issue. You’ll find contact information below.   The Weak Link: I enjoyed your article and the history behind the single-engine instrument flight rules (IFR) helicopter (“Whither the Single-Engine IFR Helo?,” R&WI...
July 1, 2015
James T. McKenna An aviation journalist for more than 25 years, James T. McKenna served as R&WI’s editor-in-chief from 2003 to 2008. He then worked on communications projects for Bell Helicopter and numerous consulting clients, including the Aerospace Industries Association, Helicopter Association International and AHS International. He has completed aircraft accident investigator courses of the...
July 1, 2015
  When it comes to establishing a heliport in the U.S., many people will tell you that the FAA advisory circular covering its design is just that: advisory. In fact, some local and state governments may consider that “advisory” document a regulation, depending on how each applies a web of national and international standards for building and fire safety and aeromedical operations. The FAA...
July 1, 2015
Though many police units have recently been buying new, an increase in available surplus helicopters may change that. Photo courtesy of Airbus Helicopters Airborne law enforcement in the U.S. has made some gains in the last year or so. A number of police agencies have been cleared by their government overseers to purchase new helicopters instead of acquiring used or surplus ones. The Airborne Law...
July 1, 2015
Police aviation accreditation standards have gained backing from an insurer, an SMS specialist and the Pentagon. Photo courtesy of the Huntington Beach Parade It has taken the better part of a decade, but the Airborne Law Enforcement Association’s vision for establishing common standards for police aviation units is being fulfilled. In the last year, the work of the Public Safety Aviation...
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