Rotor & Wing Magazine :: Commercial :: Tourism

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April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 After he finally was able to spend some time at Heli-Expo 2007, new Bell Helicopter President and CEO Richard Millman said he felt like Santa Claus. He had a big sack of gifts in his hands. Millman missed Bell’s press conference on the eve of the show in Orlando, Fla. and the show’s opening to attend a board meeting of Bell parent Textron. Textron chief Lewis...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 Saying they couldn’t deliver the aircraft at a price customers wanted, Bell Helicopter officials canceled its long-awaited Model 407 follow-on just a year after the company launched it. The 417 "was not going to be a big differentiator in the marketplace," said Bob Fitzpatrick, Bell’s senior vice president of business development, at the annual trade...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 Bell Helicopter managed to fly the prototype of its 429 light single IFR aircraft two days before Heli-Expo. But the manufacturer’s news at the show was that it has stretched out development of the aircraft to better manage risk in the program. Bell originally had planned to fly the 429 by the end of 2006 and gain certification and start deliveries by...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 Helicopter manufacturers will be busy in the coming year filling orders received at the Heli-Expo 2007. Eurocopter received a total of 112 orders from providers of emergency medical, oil and gas exploration and tourism services, as well as private operators. In the oil and gas market, Eurocopter took 47 orders including 27 for the...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 With a backlog of $14.5 billion and a 50-percent jump in sales, Eurocopter faces the challenge of meeting delivery schedules without overheating its supply and production systems. That was the message new Eurocopter President and CEO Lutz Bertling brought to Heli-Expo. He...
April 1, 2007
PRODUCTS/AIRFRAMES Bank of America is pursuing a greater share of the market for financing, leasing, and refinancing new and pre-owned turbine helicopters in the United States. To lead its initiative, the bank has hired Chuck McGuire, an industry veteran with 15 years at...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 AgustaWestland nearly doubled the number of helicopter orders it booked last year and is working off a total backlog of more than $11.2 billion. The company’s CEO, Giuseppe Orsi, reported at Heli-Expo that the Finmeccanica subsidiary with major operations in Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States took orders for 274 of its civil helicopters. That...
April 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO 2007 New management is making progress in reversing problems of an MD Helicopters that was "20 years broken," but it will take years to complete that process, according the manufacturer’s CEO. "This is a company that’s 20 years broken," said Lynn...
April 1, 2007
April 10-13 — Naval Helicopter Assn. Annual Symposium, , Town & Country Resort, San Diego, Calif. Contact: Col. Howard Whitfield (retired), U.S. Marine Corps. (619) 435-7139; E-mail: rotorrev@simplyweb.net; Web: www.navalhelicopterassn.org. April 12-13 — FlightSafety International/Rotor & Wing Helicopter Safety Forum 2007  , Embassy Suites DFW, Dallas/Fort Worth International...
April 1, 2007
TIMES ARE GOOD IN THE HELICOPTER INDUSTRY. IN some ways, they’re too good. Take Schweizer Aircraft, for example. The Horseheads, N.Y.-based manufacturer’s core businesses — commercial and military helicopters, fixed-wing surveillance aircraft, unmanned helicopters, and aerospace subcontracting — are all booming. The same is true for the "new" lines of work added in the...
April 1, 2007
IT MAY SEEM LIKE NO ONE IS HAPPY WITH THE current high demand for new helicopters. Operators don’t like having to wait a year or more for aircraft. Customers of commercial ones want more services than it is possible to get at times, because everything available is flying. Manufacturers complain they could garner more sales if they could build helicopters faster. Smiling among the unhappy crowd...
April 1, 2007
THEY ARE MORE THAN PIECES OF TAUT MATERIAL stretched across rods in an aircraft. Today, the seats in a helicopter can be quite plush and comfortable, making the ride an enjoyable experience even in the bumpiest of weather. Whereas once, safety might have meant a snugly fastened seat belt (if that), the modern-day rotorcraft seat has all the elements of a highly regulated, highly tested piece of machinery...
March 1, 2007
EVERYONE LOVES THEIR AIRCRAFT, and everyone wants everybody else to love them, too. Even a clunker of a bird can endear itself to its pilots, and especially its mechanics. Which, I suspect, is one reason aviators make some of the most avid and innovative photographers. We like to show off our hardware and what we can do with it. Who can blame us? Fliers are an elite group, no matter what they fly. Just...
March 1, 2007
President Bush’s latest proposal for funding the U.S. aviation system in Fiscal 2008 and beyond calls for a new set of user fees to replace airline ticket taxes, a move that has general-aviation interest groups lining up to attack it in Congress. The Bush administration’s $67.4-billion Fiscal 2008 budget request for the U.S. Transportation Dept., which covers the FAA and its regulation and...
March 1, 2007
LYNN TILTON IS NOT AFRAID TO ADMIT A MISTAKE. "I make mistakes all the time," said the head of the New York distressed-debt investment firm, which since mid-2005 has been the owner of MD Helicopters. That is in part the nature of her job, she said: She owns 70 different companies, 50 of them with 100-percent stakes. They’re all in different industries. They’ve all got different...
March 1, 2007
IF THERE’S A DOWNTURN IN THE OFFING, IT’S HARD TO find someone who has a hint of it. As many of us packed our bags and prepared to wade into the hubbub of this year’s Heli-Expo in Orlando, Rotor & Wing surveyed the industry on the promises and pitfalls that 2007 and beyond may hold. Normally a skeptical lot, the helicopter industry veterans with whom we spoke shared nothing but...
March 1, 2007
HELI-EXPO HAS GROWN APACE with the industry it represents. Just as operators and manufacturers are hard-pressed to field helicopters to meet all the demand before them, visitors to the annual gathering’s exhibit hall can barely find the time to see all the displays and products of interest. To help its readers meet that challenge, Rotor & Wing has gathered snapshots of what some of this...
March 1, 2007
T IS PERHAPS THE MOST PROMISING DEVELOPMENT in airborne navigation and communications: a single system that can track aircraft without the need for radar, let each flier see the traffic nearby, and provide updates and alerts of weather and other important information. For those reasons and its proven success in Alaska (one of the most hostile operating environments for commercial aviators), automatic...
March 1, 2007
EFFORTS TO BOOST THE SAFETY OF HELICOPTER OPERATIONS get the spotlight in the South Pacific this month during a gathering of regional and international industry leaders in Australia. Meanwhile in the United States, a forum to discuss safety challenges and solutions is taking off in Dallas. Among its many activities, that event is providing a stage for firefighting operators to ponder the best way to...
March 1, 2007
PARIS — THE INAUGURAL JAN. 24 press conference of Lutz Bertling, Eurocopter’s new CEO, was a welcome breath of fresh air in an industry better known for its obfuscating and highly selective approach to public relations than for its forthrightness. Clearly, it helped that Bertling was able to announce a historically high revenue and order backlog; that Eurocopter’s products, across the...
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