Rotor & Wing Magazine :: Military :: Heavylift

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December 1, 2006
A FAVORITE WHIPPING BOY OF POLITICIANS and the media is the military procurement program. There seems to be no end to cable-news sound bites and juicy headlines about how this program or that is over budget and behind schedule, the latest "glaring" example of military officials squandering taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars to the illicit gain of defense contractors. Certainly, there are cases...
December 1, 2006
Chinook Tops EH101, S-92 in CSAR-X Race In the end, it may have been a matter of who could field the aircraft fastest. In a move that generally shocked the rotorcraft world, at least in North America, U.S. Air Force officials on Nov. 9 chose Boeing’s CH-47 as the basis for their next-generation combat search-and-rescue helicopter. The service awarded Boeing a $712-million Combat Search-and-Rescue-X...
December 1, 2006
Dec. 5-7 — Dubai Helishow,  Dubai Airport Export, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Contact: Julia Cuthbert, +44(0)1293-823779, fax +44(0)1293- 825394; E-mail: cuthbert@mediaccom.com. Jan. 23-25, 2007 — International Specialists’ Meeting on Unmanned Rotorcraft, sponsored by the Arizona Chapter of the American Helicopter Society, Phoenix, Ariz. Phone: Scott, Swinsick, 480-891- 8429)...
December 1, 2006
2006 has been a year of learning the lessons of disasters small and large and laying the groundwork for future success. HOW DO YOU SUMMARIZE A YEAR IN THE LIFE OF THIS INDUSTRY? There is a great deal going at any time, and 2006 has been unusually busy — the sustained pace of combat operations, the growth of offshore support and EMS missions, a number of new aircraft programs, the tempo of...
December 1, 2006
Steel, aircraft, the right pilots, and certain equipment — such as night-vision systems — have all posed challenges to operators striving to meet high customer demand. 2006 PROVED TO BE A YEAR PACKED WITH ACTION — ON THE BATTLEFRONT, IN OPERATIONS, sales campaigns, and regulatory debates, and on the picket lines. The helicopter community found itself in the unusual position of seeing...
December 1, 2006
A round-up of new product developments and orders from helicopter manufactuers, vendors. THE LAST YEAR SAW A HOST OF INTRIGUING, USEFUL, and promising products to the rotorcraft marketplace. Here’s a sampling of them. Airframes: AgustaWestland A109 LUH: On April 4. AgustaWestland delivered the first two A109 Light Utility Helicopters to the Swedish Armed Forces, part of an order of 20 powered by...
December 1, 2006
A round-up of commercial and military contracts for rotorcraft and support over the last year. AAI CORP WAS AWARDED AN $87.2-MILLION, FIRM, fixed-price contract for full-rate production of the Shadow Unmanned Aerial Vehicle System and associated support equipment. A second, $65.6-million contract was awarded the company for logistical support of the Shadow UAV. Aero Comfort in January won a contract for...
December 1, 2006
Major manufacturers make progress in defense contracts and international alliances, though trouble looms. IN...
December 1, 2006
PARIS — GENERALS, WE ARE OFTEN told, spend too much time preparing for the last war rather than the next one, and this is why they have so much trouble winning current ones. Alas, as ongoing operations in Afghanistan and Iraq prove, the truth is even worse: commanders, at the bidding of politicians, are so desperate to find cheap fixes for their budget woes that they willingly overlook even the most...
November 1, 2006
FAA Focus on Operational Control Unsettles Industry The U.S. FAA is cracking down on how aircraft operators control, fly and market their flights, and its moves have unnerved some in the aviation industry-particularly those involved in helicopter emergency medical services. The agency's moves could force a revamping of arrangements in which operators acquire, fly and maintain aircraft under contract to...
November 1, 2006
PROGRAM UPDATES: Attack-Turkey was expected to finalize its Attack/Tactical Reconnaissance Helicopter (ATAK) competition at last month's Defense Industry Executive Committee meeting, but military officials objected to the short-listing of the Denel AH-2A Rooivalk and AgustaWestland's A129 Mangusta International, further delaying the program. The winning bidder should get a contract for 30 aircraft, with...
October 1, 2006
Deep and Distant Gulf of Mexico Well Holds Promise Medium- and heavy-helicopter manufacturers may get a boost if reports of a new, successful, deep and distant test oil well in the Gulf of Mexico bear out. Newer aircraft programs like AgustaWestland’s AW139 (shown right) and Sikorsky’s S-92 were launched based in part on the prospect of oil and gas companies pushing exploration and production...
October 1, 2006
Program Updates Attack- Russian manufacturer Rosvertol is likely to offer the Mi-24PN upgraded version of the Hind to militaries in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, India and Poland. The new aircraft features weight-saving features such as fixed landing gear and shortened stub wings, a Russian-made thermal imaging system, and an integral stores loading system. VIP- Zambia has taken delivery of an...
August 1, 2006
Helmet, headset and flight-suit makers are appealing to desires for safe, comfortable, even stylish flights. Helmets or headsets? That is the question for many operators today. As the industry, regulators and aviation investigators focus more and more on the safety of rotorcraft operations, many operators find themselves being prodded by insurers and safety advocates to shift from headsets to helmets for...
July 1, 2006
The U.S. Marine Corps/Sikorsky CH-53K is arguably the first serious attempt by the United States to open up the defense cooperation that NATO has been seeking for decades. The U.S. Marine Corps' CH-53K program is unique in that, for the first time, it is actively seeking European partners to share the burden and contribute technology, instead of going it alone on the strength of its domestic market. As...
July 1, 2006
With new aircraft coming on line and defense budgets shrinking, European military forces--and manufacturers-- are looking to make the most of their collective capabilities. European countries are entering the final phase of a three-part renewal cycle begun in the early 1990s, when a number of NATO members restructured their tank-heavy, Cold War armies into smaller and more maneuverable forces making wider...
July 1, 2006
Russian helicopter operators badly need to modernize their fleet of aging Soviet-built rotorcraft. As domestic oil and gas companies steadily increase exploration and research work, commercial helicopter operators accumulate cash to procure Western equipment. While Russian private and corporate operators are increasing their fleet of Western-built helicopters, domestic commercial operators are still stuck...
June 1, 2006
Insurance Tumult Means Consumer Gains, Problems for Safety Initiatives Insurance companies will soon be fighting for helicopter operators' business, driving premiums down and pumping more underwriting dollars into the market, according a top aviation insurance broker. Larry Mattiello, president of the brokerage Airsure Limited, said musical chairs among top insurance executives and the high level of...
May 1, 2006
Times Are Changing Change is afoot in many aspects of the rotorcraft industry in Australia. Australian Defence Force Chinooks have begun operations in Afghanistan as the leadership eyes transforming the military to a fast, hard-hitting, flexible force. On the civilian side, the nation's aviation regulator is pushing night-vision goggles and other safety initiatives. Most recently, the leadership of the...
May 1, 2006
U.S. Army Juggles LUH Schedule, Pushes Back Award The U.S. Army has changed its delivery schedule for the Light Utility Helicopter from six aircraft planed for delivery in Fiscal 2006 to two, with 22 to be delivered in Fiscal 2007. The service also has pushed back a decision on which manufacturing-and-support team will win the contract to produce the 322 Light Utility Helicopters from this month. Estimates...
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