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December 9, 2014
Airbus Helicopters’ upgraded EC135 T3/P3 is now in service with Aiut Alpin Dolomites – a northern Italy-based Alpine mountain rescue service. Enhancements incorporated in the latest variant of the EC135 family include significant power reserves for increased safety margins during flight and while maneuvering, an improved flight envelope, especially in hot- and-high environments, and an...
December 8, 2014
Sikorsky Sea King. Photo courtesy RAF The final Search and Rescue (SAR) conference organized by the Royal Air Force was held during early November at RAF Valley at the far tip of northwest Wales, on the island of Anglesey. In March 2015, the UK will begin the process of handing over responsibility for SAR to the new civil contractor, Bristow Helicopters. Bristow will gradually take responsibility over the...
December 8, 2014
Australian states and territories are preparing for this year’s bushfire season with aerial resources in place. Although the Australian summer only starts on Dec. 1, the bushfire season starts as early as late August in some parts of the country’s north east and continues through to April in the south west. Erickson Aircranes have started arriving in the country, with two Aircranes –...
December 8, 2014
The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey successfully demonstrated its forward-firing capability at the United States Army Proving Ground in Yuma, Ariz. Initial design work for the forward...
December 8, 2014
The Indian Navy has chosen Sikorsky to fulfill their Multi-Role Helicopter requirement for maritime roles including anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare (ASW/ASuW). Negotiations for the production of 16 S-70B SEAHAWK helicopters are...
December 5, 2014
Attendees at Heli-Expo 2014 examine the Bell 505 Jet Ranger X. Photo by Rotor & Wing Staff On Nov. 10, Bell’s newest helicopter design, the 505 Jet Ranger X successfully completed its first flight. Conducted at the company’s Mirabel, Quebec, manufacturing facility, the helicopter hailed by Bell as the aircraft that will “redefine the short, light-single class” was flown by...
December 5, 2014
Northrop Grumman has delivered the first operational MQ-8C Fire Scout to the U.S. Navy for use by ship-based commanders in intelligence-gathering operations. Photo courtesy Northrop Grumman The...
December 5, 2014
While pilots now have much more information at their disposal through increasingly complex aircraft systems, whether in the cockpit of an F-16 Fighting Falcon or an AH-64 Apache, spatial disorientation is still a danger that most aircrew will encounter.  Although modern aircraft are very safe, human performance can be a factor that leads to unsafe situations, particularly when the pilot experiences...
December 5, 2014
Airbus Helicopters Japan has successfully handed over three TH-135 training helicopters to the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF). Delivered between October and December, they are the JMSDF’s 11th, 12th, and 13th units. Airbus is also providing full maintenance and operational support to the JMSDF, including...
December 4, 2014
This NVIS-compatible panel is made by Rogerson Kratos. It is installed aboard a Bell 429 that was on display at the Airborne Law Enforcement Assoc. conference in July, 2014. Photo by Ernie Stephens Night vision imaging systems (NVIS) can improve the safety of flying at night dramatically. But the enhanced safety can only be realized with proper implementation of the entire system, and not just the goggle...
December 4, 2014
Years ago, when I first joined the police aviation unit, I was fortunate enough to be partnered with a former Marine Corps CH-46 driver. As the new guy, I was very happy when this more experienced aviator would say, “You have the controls,” and give me command of the aircraft. As I made every effort to fly as smoothly and precisely as possible, there was always some wisdom he would readily...
December 4, 2014
European helicopter management, charter, and training company Starspeed has boosted its capability for off-airfield landings with the purchase of two GL3 Portable Approach Path Indicators. Designed by Bauertech Instruments...
December 3, 2014
Earlier this year, the high sheriff of Stanislaus County (Calif.) caught some heat for allowing his helicopters to participate in several charitable events that were either outside of the county proper, or involved organizations that were not entities of the county government. One such event occurred on May 15 at the Saddle Creek Resort, just 4 n.m. inside of neighboring Calaveras County. Apparently, a...
December 3, 2014
New Zealand’s Composite Helicopters International has confirmed it plans to continue development of the KC-518 Adventourer despite the all-composite helicopter recently suffering a second crash in its flight-testing program. The KC-518, which has been under development for a couple of years, is described by Composite Helicopters as the world’s first all-composite frameless helicopter. The...
December 3, 2014
Russian Helicopters has delivered its first batch of four Mi-171Sh multirole military transport helicopters to the Ministry of Defense of Peru. Assembled at Russian Helicopters’ Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant, the helicopters have shipped a month ahead of schedule, along with aviation equipment necessary for their operation. The Mi-171Sh helicopters are equipped with onboard systems to boost combat...
December 2, 2014
In the September issue, I wrote about laser strikes on aircraft. Since that article was written, in fact predating that article, there has been an effort underway to get the FAA to consider formulating some guidelines for eye protection devices from laser strikes. As I said in the previous article, I don’t think a regulation or full-blown rule change is necessary. A well written Advisory Circular...
December 2, 2014
AgustaWestland has delivered the fifth and final AW109 GrandNew light twin helicopter to Intermountain Life Flight of Utah. The delivery comes as Intermountain Life Flight begins to expand EMS and SAR service coverage to patients throughout the western United States.   AW109 GrandNew. Photo courtesy AgustaWestland A next-generation variant of the AW109S...
December 1, 2014
FDC/Aerofilter manufactures this PMA filter for the Bell 206L-1, L-3 and L-4. Image courtesy of FDC/Aerofilter Protecting the power plant from the worst effects of the ingestion of particles has always been a problem. But when United States military helicopter forces began operating in the dusty environments of Iraq, and then the even worse and oft quoted “talcum powder” environment experienced...
December 1, 2014
 In mid-February of this year, I received a call from the publisher of this magazine asking me the most ridiculous question I have ever been asked in the 25 years that I have been a pilot: “How would you like to be trained to fly the AgustaWestland AW609 Tilt Rotor?” As it turned out, I would be the first person outside of the manufacturer’s own pilots to fly the current iteration of...
December 1, 2014
In February of 2014, Enstrom Helicopter introduced a prototype of its TH180, a brand new, single-engine piston design intended for the flight training and private ownership markets. Photo by Rotor & Wing Staff This month, we here at Rotor & Wing are reflecting upon what the industry has seen in 2014. As we flipped back through calendar, many things were brought back to mind. The year saw just about...
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