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April 1, 2013
The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has launched its VTOL X-Plane program to challenge industry engineers to dream up “novel concepts” for the next generation of vertical lift.     During a conference call with reporters, VTOL X-Plane Program Manager Ashish Bagai said that one of the main objectives is to “not just revisit existing methods or approaches...
April 1, 2013
During an exclusive interview with Rotor & Wing on March 6, Bell Helicopter President & CEO John Garrison detailed the manufacturer’s plans for the future of tiltrotor technology. Bell has submitted its own proposal for the U.S. Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate’s (AATD) Joint Multi Role (JMR) technology demonstrator (TD). All proposals had to be received in early March. Bell...
April 1, 2013
With the threat of sequestration in the air, a question mark against the numbers of military that would attend, and a gloomy presence by an industry reluctant to take part in a gathering that has seemingly got progressively smaller both in exhibitors and visitors, the annual winter AUSA ILW Aviation went ahead in January 2013 at National Harbor, Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C. But speakers there...
April 1, 2013
Bell 206 Track Record   I’d like to comment on the well-written column by Lee Benson in the March issue of Rotor & Wing. He makes many good points about the Bell 206, and it's proven track record—both from a cost/simplicity standpoint, and its docile autorotational characteristics. Also, it truly is a very easy helicopter to fly… but that’s one of the issues I’d like...
April 1, 2013
Eurocopter anticipates that a fix to the main gearbox issues with the EC225 will be available in April. The model was temporarily grounded after two ditching incidents in the UK’s North Sea during 2012. “We have to fix the technical issues which we are currently facing with the 225. No doubt,” said Eurocopter President & CEO Lutz Bertling during a March 5 press briefing at Heli-Expo...
April 1, 2013
Most things that happen in helicopter aviation can be viewed from more than one perspective, and sometimes achieving access to the correct viewpoint can end up feeling like a matter of life and death. During the 1970s, out of Borinquen, Puerto Rico, we enjoyed not only the pleasure of covering the largest search and rescue sector in all of U.S. Coast Guard operations with the exquisitely capable Sikorsky...
April 1, 2013
MD Helicopters CEO Lynn Tilton through the cockpit of the MD540F.    At HAI Lynn Tilton, owner of MD Helicopters, said she was scarred, but stronger for it, in her efforts to turn MD Helicopters around since buying the company in 2005. “I can feel the Howard Hughes legacy on my shoulders.” The latest MD product, the MD540F, is on many military wish lists, she said. “We have...
April 1, 2013
Turbomeca uncovered its TM800 during an unveiling ceremony at Heli-Expo, giving it the name Arrano.    In an unveiling that featured an almost Cirque de Soleil-style introduction with acrobats fitting for Las Vegas and CEO Olivier Andries perched above a crowd gathered around the company’s booth, Turbomeca took the wraps off its latest engine on March 5...
April 1, 2013
Lockheed Martin/Kaman unmaned cargo K-Max.    Gary Tenison, vice president of business development and marketing for Kaman Aerospace, told Rotor & Wing that the company’s recent restructuring is part of a strategy to focus on operators. “One Kaman is about consolidating the Kaman business,” he said. “Helicopters were once apart and are now within the Aerosystems group...
April 1, 2013
As Marenco Swisshelicopter’s SKYe SH09 progresses into prototype development and first flight during 2013, the manufacturer has chosen Heliflite to serve as a distributor in...
April 1, 2013
Bell engineers use the 525 Relentless simulator to test the ergonomics and flight characteristics of the “super medium” helicopter design. Note the side-stick configuration of the fly-by-wire controls.   Last year, Fort Worth, Texas-based Bell Helicopter unveiled the mock-up of its model 525 “Relentless,” the aircraft its designers call a “super medium” twin...
April 1, 2013
Roberto Garavaglia and new AgustaWestland CEO Daniele Romiti during the company’s Heli-Expo press conference.    The expectation of a battle royale between the press and the management team from AgustaWestland at the company’s press conference on the eve of the opening of Heli-Expo in Las Vegas over the alleged Indian AW101 scandal in India did not materialize. Instead, newly...
April 1, 2013
Enstrom CEO Jerry Mullins and Guo Huaqiang, an official with parent company CQHIC.   Enstrom Helicopter of Menominee, Mich. used Heli-Expo 2013 in Las Vegas as a backdrop for the introduction of a Garmin G1000H flight control option for its 480B light turbine aircraft. The fully integrated system is primarily a flight information source that provides terrain avoidance, collision awareness, weather and...
April 1, 2013
Walking through the long hallways of the Las Vegas Convention Center during HAI’s Heli-Expo in early March, I didn’t have to go far to see some sort of ongoing safety event. Whether it was a class on accident prevention, HFACS or safety management systems (SMS), the show was overwhelmingly conspicuous with safety awareness. I was impressed with the number of members who wanted to learn more...
April 1, 2013
TSI’s D Smith (left) presents Moral Courage award to Bond CEO Richard Mintern.  The U.S. Transportation Safety Institute (TSI), in partnership with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and HAI’s Safety Committee, presented the first ever “Moral Courage Award” to Bond Offshore Helicopters and the U.S. Coast Guard during a ceremony at Heli-Expo. TSI’s D Smith noted that...
April 1, 2013
Cobham HeliSAS is an autopilot system designed for light helicopters.    Cobham, the avionics firm based in Mineral Wells, Texas, arrived at Heli-Expo 2013 with HeliSAS, the company’s sleek autopilot system specifically designed for the light helicopter market. Weighing in at a scant 15 lbs., the system, which was designed for Part 27-catagory helicopters in VFR conditions, is capable of...
April 1, 2013
Robinson CEO Kurt Robinson at the company’s Heli-Expo 2013 press briefing.   At its annual press conference held during Heli-Expo in March, Robinson Helicopter Co. President Kurt Robinson reported impressive 2012 sales for its three-model line of rotorcraft. Its new R66 turbine, sales-leading R44 piston, and two-seat R22 all kept the company’s 617,000-square-foot assembly plant in...
April 1, 2013
April 8-10: Navy Lead Sea-Air-Space Exposition, Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center, National Harbor, Md. Visit www.seaairspace.org April 9-11: Aircraft Interiors Expo, Hamburg Messe, Hamburg, Germany. Visit www.aircraftinteriorsexpo.com April 10–14: Quad-A Annual Convention, Fort Worth, Texas. Contact Quad-A, phone 1-203-268-2450 or visit www.quad-a.org April 16–18: Asian Business Aviation...
April 1, 2013
CAE has hired Denny Brisley for the newly created position of director for operations in Washington, D.C. She will carry out the senior executive role for CAE in the region, supporting its Defense and Security business unit, as well as government relations. Brisley comes from SIAC, where she was a senior market development executive. She also served as an expert at the Office of Secretary of Defense, and...
April 1, 2013
Lutz Bertling with American Eurocopter CEO Marc Paganini at the company’s March 5 Heli-Expo press conference, a week before  announcing his plans to leave for Bombardier Transportation.   Longstanding head of Eurocopter, Dr. Lutz Bertling, has announced his departure from the EADS division in favor of Berlin-based Bombardier Transportation, where he will take the top post of president...
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