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February 6, 2015
Metro Aviation recently obtained a supplemental type certificate (STC) for Airbus Helicopters’ AS350 B3 with Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) capability, meeting the FAA’s 2020 deadline. “Metro had the opportunity to obtain the ADS-B STC in conjunction with a fleet order of AS350 B3s. Not only will future aircraft installations benefit from the STC, but we will be able...
February 6, 2015
Book your travel plans now (hopefully, you already have), because HAI Heli-Expo 2015 is almost upon us. This year, the event will be held from March 2 - 5 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., and more than 20,000 attendees are expected. It will feature professional educational courses, exhibitors, events and seminars that cover all aspects of the helicopter community including military...
February 5, 2015
Inside the Bavarian Mountain Rescue Center. Photos by Andrew Drwiega The Bavarian Mountain Rescue Center in Bad Tolz, southern Germany, is one of the world’s leading full-scale helicopter rescue training centers. Called the Center for Safeness and Training, it has been purposely built to provide the most challenging rescue environments – all from the comparative luxury of an indoor center where...
February 5, 2015
CNN has entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRDA) with the FAA to advance efforts to integrate unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) into newsgathering and reporting. The arrangement will integrate efforts from...
February 5, 2015
Helicopter Search and Rescue (SAR) teams face daily challenges when it comes to safely and efficiently doing their jobs. There are several companies that design, manufacture and sell items such as hoists, harnesses and cargo hooks that help make the jobs a bit easier. Listed here are just a few of those companies and items available today. Aerial Aerial’s Spider is a six-person extraction device...
February 4, 2015
Digital night vision capability is now in the hands of Apache helicopter pilots. Following a $27 million contract signed in June 2013, the U.S. Army has begun equipping its Boeing AH-64 Apache helicopter fleet with a state-of-the-art digital night vision systems provided by Intevac. Designated the M611 camera, this system was designed as part of the U.S. Army’s Apache Modernized Target Acquisition...
February 4, 2015
The rear guard action being fought to keep Boeing’s AH-64 Apaches in the National Guard instead of transferring them all into the regular Army has been bolstered following the passing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) by Congress last December. The legislation includes $1.25 billion for the National Guard and Reserve to address modernization shortfalls (not requested by President...
February 3, 2015
Last year, Revolution Aviation became the first private helicopter flight school to offer instruction in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). There was plenty of new ground to cover at the time; only the military and select colleges were training UAV pilots, no certification standards existed, and commercial unmanned flights were still banned by the FAA. Revolution joined dozens of other industry...
February 3, 2015
The United Nations is requesting the return of approximately 24 Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopters to the peace keeping mission in Congo. This comes three years after New Delhi recalled them to address its own country’s domestic needs. The Deccan Herald, an English-language daily newspaper in the Indian state of Karnataka, reports that U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and Indian External Affairs...
February 3, 2015
Over the past few months, the FAA has granted several exemptions to UAV operators in the commercial market. To date, the FAA has given 14 exemptions to 13 companies in various industries. Most recently, the administration granted the first exemption for the use of UAVs for photography in the real estate...
February 2, 2015
This year, Bristow Helicopters will become the first civilian operator to provide all of the United Kingdom’s (UK) search and rescue (SAR) helicopters after being appointed by the Department of Transport on March 25, 2013. The task will be to provide SAR coverage around 10,500 miles of coastline, onshore and further offshore. The contract, worth $2.4 billion (£1.6 billion), was announced by...
February 2, 2015
AMST’s Desdemona dynamic and tactical flight simulator used by the RNLAF.  Photos courtesy AMST What is spatial disorientation (SD)? Strictly defined, it is the inability of a person to correctly determine his body position in space. In a helicopter or aircraft, that can quickly lead to fatal consequences. The fourth Spatial Disorientation and Night Vision Training Workshop, held in Salzburg...
February 1, 2015
Matt Long has been promoted from the assistant VP of finance to vice president of finance at Columbia Helicopters, effective since Jan. 2, 2015. Long replaces Stan Wilson, who was promoted from his role of president and vice president of finance to chairman of the board of directors. Long has been with Columbia Helicopters for seven years, beginning as an assistant controller and later assuming the role of...
January 9, 2015
Photo courtesy VDOS Global The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently awarded five regulatory exemptions for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) operations to four companies in various industries. Trimble Navigation Limited, VDOS Global, and Clayco all received one exemption, and Woolpert received two. These companies will use UAS to aid in aerial...
January 9, 2015
So the troops are coming back from Afghanistan and the mission is over. Really? Haven’t we heard this somewhere before? On Aug. 31, 2010, President Obama announced the end of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) confirming: “We’ve removed nearly 100,000 U.S. troops from Iraq. We’ve closed or transferred to the Iraqis hundreds of bases. And we have moved millions of pieces of equipment out...
January 7, 2015
I once enjoyed the privilege of spending the cold, dark midwinter months in Deadhorse on Alaska’s North Slope, qualifying for civilian IFR competency in Bell 212s, and proving along the way that unexpected safety challenges await in all environments. This exercise was accomplished as a byproduct of participation in one of the most interesting rotory-wing operations imaginable, wherein Alaska’s...
January 7, 2015
Bell Helicopter has appointed Matthew J. Hasik to the position of executive vice president, commercial business, succeeding Danny Maldonado who has been selected as president and CEO of Textron Financial.   Barry Kohler, president of Bell Helicopter Textron Canada since 2009, is now executive vice president, customer service and support, replacing Eric Cardinali who has been selected to lead global...
January 6, 2015
Bell Long Ranger used for utility work. Photo by Dennis Pierce After writing several articles on SMS and as a member of the U.S. Helicopter Safety Team (USHST) SMS Committee, I set out to find out which operators and flight schools are actually using SMS in their daily operations. I know that most of the larger operators have a formal safety management system, or SMS, but it’s the smaller...
January 6, 2015
Airbus Helicopters X4. Graphic courtesy Airbus Helicopters While most major players in the helicopter industry are keeping their powder dry before revealing their future plans at the world’s largest helicopter convention, Heli-Expo (March 2-5, Orlando, Fla.), there are a number of trends that are worth watching in the year ahead. In particular, there is still a need to drive new helicopter platforms...
January 6, 2015
Photo courtesy ING Robotic Aviation The Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration (ACUASI) has selected ING Robotic Aviation’s Responder rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) system to aid with research into systems integration and specific UAV applications. ING Robotic...
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