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December 5, 2012
Progress in the ongoing development of the United States Marine Corps’ (USMC) heavy lift helicopter replacement, the Sikorsky CH-53K, has been announced with the delivery of the prototype aircraft to the flight test team. This means that NAVAIR and Sikorsky pilots can begin the program of scheduled ground checks that will take place over the next year. Production of the ground test vehicle (GTV)...
December 4, 2012
Under a non-binding letter of intent, Erickson Air-Crane has agreed to acquire the air logistics unit of Brazilian oil and natural gas operator HRT Participacoes em Petroleo...
December 3, 2012
The U.S. Navy has extended an existing contract with Rolls-Royce covering engine sustainment services on the...
December 1, 2012
By Andrew Drwiega, Military Editor With the U.S. Army now seemingly on a timeline for the acquisition of a new reconnaissance helicopter—the Armed Aerial Scout (AAS)—to replace its existing Bell OH-58 Kiowa Warrior fleet, the main question in these budget wracked times must be: How much “bang for the buck” can the U.S. Army afford? The challenge is one that has been delayed for...
December 1, 2012
2012 turned out to be a far more interesting year than many of us expected it to be in terms of new products and new uses or iterations of existing products. This article began with a simple concept—to provide an overview of all the products and services that industry vendors believed in strongly enough to showcase on the Hot Products pages for you during the past year. After all, the surveys always...
December 1, 2012
Approaching the beginning of my fifth decade, I look back to those old western movies with high regard, remembering as a boy being thrilled by the arrival (just in the nick of time naturally) of the cavalry with their white hats, yellow neckerchiefs, white gloves and blue uniforms with the distinctive yellow stripe down the trousers. The image was one that endured, from Randolph Scott in 7th Cavalry to...
November 28, 2012
Stakes are getting ever higher as government rotary wing contract awards often have far-reaching positives for American defense contractors. In the works are programs to replace the Army’s scout helicopter (Armed Arial Scout) and the Air Force’s combat search and rescue (C-SAR) helicopters (Combat Rescue Helicopter—CRH). The scout replacement is now in round three after the...
November 27, 2012
The future of the United Kingdom’s Westland Attack Helicopter (WAH-64D) Apache force is in the early stages of review. With the UK’s commitment to operations in Afghanistan ending within two years, the Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Capability Sustainment Program (CSP) is examining the spectrum of possibilities, according to Col. Andrew Cash, Commander Aviation of the British Army’s 16...
November 19, 2012
The China Airshow, which ran from November 13-18, has been good for Sikorsky in that it has been announcing contracts for its civil helicopters, namely the S-92 and S-76D. The Zhuhai Helicopter Company (ZHC), a subsidiary of China Southern Airlines, has acquired two Sikorsky S-92s to be used in offshore operations. ZHC will operate five S-92s and 12 S-76s once the deliveries are complete, targeted for the...
November 16, 2012
In line with the Department of the Army’s FY13 budget of $271,683 million for the ongoing delivery of the UH-72A Lakota program, EADS North America has confirmed a contract award of $181.8 million for a further 34 helicopters. These will be delivered from September 2013 and will mean a total contract award of 312...
November 14, 2012
Moscow-based Russian Helicopters has unveiled more details on its Russian Advanced Commercial Helicopter (Rachel). The Rachel program is meant as an eventual replacement for the Mi-8/17 family. The “high-speed” medium twin will be capable of 194 knots, thanks to “streamlined main rotor blades and fuselage.” At 10 to 12 metric tons (22,000 to 26,400 pounds), it will have a seating...
November 8, 2012
The U.S. Army has granted a $66.1-million modification to an existing contract related...
November 6, 2012
The U.S. Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division has issued a $14.4-million contract to Sikorsky Support Services related to H-53 and H-60 support. The agreement, which runs through October 2015, covers...
November 1, 2012
Pratt & Whitney Canada's PW210S turboshaft engine that will power the Sikorsky S-76D is in line for...
November 1, 2012
AgustaWestland has announced that the AW101 and AW159 Lynx Wildcat will play a role in the latest James Bond movie, “Skyfall,” which is due out Friday, Nov. 9. Eon Productions, which produces the British film series, used...
November 1, 2012
Proper engine maintenance guarantees a long-lasting, efficient source of power for the helicopter. Regular and thorough helicopter engine maintenance ensures safety, compliance with legal obligations, peace of mind, and enhanced flying pleasure. According to the Helicopter Safety Advisory Conference, engine-related mechanical malfunctions are one of the leading causes of helicopter accidents. Powerplant...
October 31, 2012
What all of the competitors for the Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) acquisition seem to agree on is a satisfaction that the U.S. Army team conducting the evaluation of the different proposals is doing a great job. This has been a three-step process: 1) Request for Information (RfI) 2) Discussions with the army’s expert team, and finally; 3) a voluntary flight demonstration (VFD). The competitors, which...
October 31, 2012
Recently appointed Apache program Col. Jeff Hager confirmed during last week’s AUSA—the U.S. Army’s annual gathering in Washington, D.C.—that the Apache AH-64 Block III attack helicopter would now be officially known as the AH-64E (Echo). During a briefing, Hager pointed to the Aug. 9, 2012 decision by the Defense Acquisition Board (DAB) to go to full rate production, which he said...
October 24, 2012
Following a Voluntary Flight Demonstration (VFD) for the U.S. Army in late September and early October, EADS North America took its AAS-72X+ on a cross-country tour through mid-October, ending up at the AUSA exposition this week in Washington, D.C. The AAS-72X+, a derivative of the UH-72A Lakota, is one of the suitors for the Army’s potential Armed Aerial Scout (AAS) competition. The Army will decide...
October 24, 2012
Bell Helicopter’s portion of the voluntary flight demonstration (VFD) that could be a precursor to a formal Armed Aerial Scout competition is taking place this week, according to the Fort Worth, Texas-based manufacturer. The Army is looking at alternatives to replace the existing fleet of OH-58Ds, and Bell is proposing an upgraded OH-58F that has a number of new...
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