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June 1, 2014
Christian Cornille has been appointed as the executive vice president of industry for Airbus Helicopters. He has been moved within the Airbus Group from his previous position as CEO of subsidiary Aerolina. His role is to further develop the industrial model of the helicopter manufacturer within the division’s transformation plan. He will also be a member of the executive committee reporting to CEO...
June 1, 2014
PIC Wire & Cable: High Standards Demand Higher Quality Interconnect Solutions PIC Wire & Cable has over 40 years of application success in programs and systems worldwide including the AgustaWestland AW609. We serve the aviation industry’s Military, Corporate and Commercial Sectors (Civil, Military and Parapublic/First Responder Helicopters)—providing interconnect solutions including...
May 30, 2014
Keith Cianfrani Imagine hovering for a local news station over a large city at night, filming a story when your engine fails and you are forced to make an autorotation to a suitable area that you can’t actually see and hopefully no trees, poles wires or cars will be in your flight path. This is a situation you do not want to be in. However, you have power to the rotor system with full operating rotor...
May 29, 2014
My last column dealt with describing the power required by the rotor to produce optimum results in various stages of flight. This sparked a bunch of interesting conversations that have become the basis for this month’s topic: varying the rotor RPM. Many of today’s helicopters are operated at a constant rotor RPM, but there are benefits to varying RPM in flight. It allows for a greater portion...
May 28, 2014
Riding on a bus with a group of journalists through the swamplands near Sikorsky Aircraft’s Development Flight Center in West Palm Beach, Fla., we drove past an area packed with alligators, wild boars, fire ants and other creatures. While we didn’t see any wild boars, there were six or seven gators off the side of the road and mounds of fire ants that served to remind visitors to watch their...
May 28, 2014
Limerick, Ireland-based Waypoint Leasing has closed on a five-year term loan facility with a Goldman Sachs-led group. The helicopter lessor will use the funding to refinance six existing helicopters under Waypoint’s $385 million revolving credit facility, consisting of AgustaWestland AW139 and Sikorsky S-76C++ and S-92 variants. The $72.5-million term loan “allows...
May 12, 2014
Columbia Helicopters has added a known quantity to its board of directors – U.S. Army Maj. Gen. William T. "Tim" Crosby (Retired). Crosby retired after serving almost 35 years in the U.S. Army, most recently as program executive officer (PEO) for U.S. Army Aviation. His service included a...
May 8, 2014
Several rotary innovations have been in development for a number of years in New Zealand and Australia. What unites them, as with any organization large or small searching to improve on that which already exists, is the constant and insatiable need for funding. But with that as a constant moderator of the rate of progress possible, take the influence of new composite materials together with the growing...
May 8, 2014
Auckland, New Zealand-based Spidertracks is hopeful of other deals with helicopter manufacturers after its Spider real-time tracking system was recently selected by Robinson Helicopters as an option for all R22, R44 and R66 models. The Spidertracks system uses the Iridium satellite network to send real-time aircraft location to a web application. Two versions...
May 7, 2014
Sikorsky Aircraft rolled out the CH-53K King Stallion on May 5 at its facilities in West Palm Beach, Fla...
May 6, 2014
Sikorksy Matrix Technology at AUVSI Unmanned Systems in 2013. Photo by Woodrow Bellamy III It seems like autonomous helicopters or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are all the rage these days. From individual UAVs being turned into package deliverers to a swarm of small quad-copters playing the James Bond theme, it seems like there is no limit to what we’re going to ask these small rotorcraft to do...
May 6, 2014
Technology is, and always will be, one of the cornerstones of Rotor & Wing’s editorial coverage, and the May issue is dedicated to the subject. It is often said that military technology is 10 years ahead of civil/commercial technology. Around 10 years after the cancellation of the Boeing-Sikorsky RAH-66 Comanche program in 2004, the world is experiencing a period where commercial applications are...
May 6, 2014
A trip to one of the many aviation conferences that highlight vertical lift machines will reveal the fast-paced progress of rotorcraft technology. The desire to fly higher, faster, farther, and longer in rotary wing machines has become an increasingly important design point to many large manufacturers. The small Wichita Falls, Texas-based aviation research and development firm of Carter Aviation...
May 6, 2014
On April 8, Gen. Frank Grass, chief of the National Guard Bureau, seemed to have conceded to the Senate Armed Services Committee what was always going to be an unwinnable fight against the sequestration-caused reshaping of U.S. Army Aviation; that the Guard could not keep its Boeing Apaches. The Guard will hand over its 192 AH-64 Apaches to the regular force while gaining 111 Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawks in...
May 5, 2014
The U.S. Navy has unveiled a $100-million program to fund the development of newer, more autonomous helicopter drones. The program aims to further reduce the need to have a trained aviator in the loop. Unlike current unmanned systems, the new technology will be expected to solve operational problems at landing zones, such as blowing debris and unforeseen obstacles, without on-site or remote...
May 5, 2014
The U.S. Helicopter Safety Team (USHST) has released a follow-up report to its initial helicopter accident analysis from 2011. The report, conducted by the U.S. Joint Helicopter Implementation Measurement Data Analysis Team (JHIMDAT), analyzes U.S. civil helicopter accidents from 2009 to 2011, and...
May 2, 2014
As LA County Fire transitioned into its first two standard model 412s, we suffered from a series of issues with the Sperry automatic flight control system (AFCS). Sperry had been brought out, teeth had been ground, swear words had been used, but the answer to why the aircraft would occasionally get uncommanded tail rotor inputs was only partially understood. We were working through this problem...
May 1, 2014
Lee Benson is a retired helicopter pilot who’s flying career started in Vietnam with the U.S. Army and concluded as Chief Pilot for the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Lee’s 15,500 hours of flying and 40 years of military, commercial and government flying operations afford him a very broad background in the helicopter world. In 2008 he started a consulting company and is contracted to...
May 1, 2014
Victor Novikov Russian Helicopters has made numerous announcements and appointments in recent weeks.Victor Novikov is now managing director for Kumertau Aviation Production Enterprise, which is part of Russian Helicopters. Kumertau produces co-axial helicopters including Ka-27, Ka-31 and Ka-226s. Novikov was previously with DBA Engineering as deputy CEO. He replaces Sergei Mikryukov who had been in the...
May 1, 2014
Another Royal Air Force (RAF) Chinook pilot, Flight Lt. Charlie Lockyear, has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) for operations in Afghanistan with Master Aircrew (MACR) Bob Sunderland receiving a Mention in Dispatches during the same action. While on a mission in May 2013 to...
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