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September 10, 2014
Australian aviation regulator, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, has responded to the Australian Helicopter Industry Association’s (AHIA) criticisms of the proposed Part 61 (flight crew licensing) regulations, accusing the AHIA of being “wide of the mark” in a number of its claims. The new regulations are designed to bring Australia’s rules in line with International Civil...
September 9, 2014
The Maltese armed forces (AFM) have taken delivery of their first AgustaWestland AW139 helicopter destined for maritime border control missions. At the acceptance ceremony, Maltese Home Affairs Minister Manuel Mallia praised the aircraft and said that it was...
September 8, 2014
The Cargo on/off Loading System (COOL) from Boeing CH-47 allows the rapid configuration of the helicopter floor between cargo and other missions. Photo courtesy Boeing On July 22, Bell-Boeing was awarded a $69.6 million cost-plus-fixed-fee delivery order in support of the V-22 for the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy. The order relates to the...
September 8, 2014
Vector Aerospace Helicopter Services-North America has added the AS223L1 model to its FAA certified cockpit voice and flight-data recording (CVFDR) Supplemental Type Certificate (STC). It joins the...
September 8, 2014
David Rogers David Rogers has joined Elbit Systems of America, subsidiary of Elbit Systems, Ltd., as the company’s senior vice president of operations. Rogers has a Bachelor of Sciences degree in Industrial Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology as well as an MBA from Carnegie-Mellon University. He brings more than 20 years of experience in management, operations, engineering, and...
September 5, 2014
Last time in this column, a description of an oddball surprise which could conceivably befall any unsuspecting helicopter pilot was presented, and it implied that experiences which crop up in the environment inhabited by Coast Guard operators represent only a single category in an almost infinite variety of obstacles to safety unavoidable across the composite spectrum of rotary wing aviation. Being...
September 5, 2014
German Bell UH-1D Hueys leaving the Ovar Portuguese airbase in northern Portugal. Photo by Andrew Drwiega “We train up to 700 students a year and we have somewhere around 27 training schools - and that doesn’t make sense,” said Andrew Gray, the European Defence Agency’s (EDA) Hot Blade Helicopter Exercise Program (HEP) manager. “There is no harmonization of flying...
September 5, 2014
We have all seen the statistics concerning laser strikes versus aircraft over the last few years. Reported laser strikes on aircraft in the U.S. have increased from 300 in 2005 to 3,900 in 2013. These strikes can range in severity from a significant distraction, to a safety hazard which could cause an accident or temporary to permanent damage to the flight crews’ eyes. I recently attended...
September 4, 2014
Nibbio aircraft by Politecnico di Milano The winners of the American Helicopter Society (AHS) International 31st Student Design Competition were St. Louis University (SLU) in the undergraduate category and Georgia Institute of Technology in the graduate category. The challenge set by AHS for the 2014 Student Design Competition was to design an experimental Vertical Take-off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft...
September 3, 2014
While truth is no doubt the first casualty of war, I am relatively sure that the Internet is the number one killer. OK – That is not an entirely fair statement, because truth on the Internet is not entirely dead, but there are times that it seems to have gone into deep hiding. How is it that something that holds such promise as the great equalizer of knowledge, has instead become the greatest source...
September 3, 2014
The information found in a pilot’s logbook and FAA records may not be an accurate reflection their proficiency and work history. Does PRIA see through the smoke and mirrors? Photo by Ernie Stephens In August 2010, the Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Extension Act changed the way the Pilot Records Improvement Act (PRIA) works and how the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) handles an airman’s...
September 3, 2014
At this year’s Quad-A convention, held in Nashville, Tenn. in May, Bell Helicopter displayed a full scale mock-up of its V-280 Valor, a third-generation tiltrotor aircraft. Photo by Andrew Drwiega The most unsurprising announcement of the year so far is the U.S. Army Aviation Technology Directorate’s (AATD) decision revealed on August 12 that the Boeing/Sikorsky partnership and Bell Helicopter...
September 3, 2014
Here we go again. Another crisis in the Middle East with the U.S. and the Great Britain among the first to react with military assistance to protect and resupply civilians freeing from the surprisingly well organized and equally well armed forces of the Islamic State (formerly ISIS). News of the Iraqi Air Force and Army, the force that took over from American and allied forces when they exited the country...
September 1, 2014
This X4 UAV is equipped with position lights for added safety. Photo courtesy of Draganfly Innovations Pilots and operators of manned aircraft are under a significant threat as inexpensive microdrones proliferate, while the FAA drags its heels in crafting a regulatory framework that will reduce risks, and permit drones and manned aircraft to peacefully and safely to coexist. The core of the problem is that...
September 1, 2014
Rapco, Inc. of Hartland, Wis., is a manufacturer and distributor of PMA parts for both helicopters and airplanes. Photo courtesy of Rapco A helicopter is, in fact, a very large collection of parts, most of which operate in an extremely violent fashion. Which means, of course, that they have to be replaced on a regular basis – normally during a pre-determined period based on flight time or flight...
September 1, 2014
Fully integrated flight data recording is now affordable for the light single and twin engine fleet. PHI is outfitting their Bell 407s with NORTH FDS HUMS/HFDM recorders. Photo courtesy PHI Health and usage monitoring systems (HUMS) and helicopter flight data management (HFDM) systems are powerful aviation tools. Their capabilities will eventually make them mandatory and will prove indispensible to the...
September 1, 2014
FFL’s aft cabins, equipped with the latest technology, are accessible by sliding side doors and rear-mounted clamshell doors. Photo by Ernie Stephens If you are in portions of Wisconsin or Illinois, and your life is in immediate danger from illness or accident, you won’t just expect a ride from Flight For Life... you’ll want it! Flight For Life (FFL) was the first air medical program in...
September 1, 2014
Aero Dynamix Achieves QPL Certification Aero Dynamix, Inc. has now been approved by the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) for addition to the qualified products list (QPL) for MIL-DTL-7788 integrally illuminated panels. Aero Dynamix’s proprietary, in-house panel design and production capabilities include: state-of-the-art illumination design and testing technologies essential for effective light...
August 12, 2014
The Scorpion helmet mounted sight and display (HMSD) system from Thales provides color symbology and video for both day and night missions, improving situational awareness among crews aboard armed helicopters. Photo courtesy Thales The military began using night vision technology as early as the 1950s. When decreasing size and increasing performance finally put night vision technology in the hands –...
August 12, 2014
Australian helicopter charter operator Air Melbourne has launched a Heli-Express service linking Melbourne’s general aviation airport, Moorabbin Airport (MBW), with the central business district and the city’s international airport. The company operates three twin-engine, eight-seat AgustaWestland AW109s seven days a week. The flight between Moorabbin and...
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