HAI Convention News

Martin-Baker dons mufti for civil helo crowd

 - February 20, 2007, 5:30 AM

Crashworthy crew and passenger seats for military aircraft, including ejection seats, are UK-based Martin-Baker’s bread and butter. Now the company has used its military experience to develop two different crashworthy seats for the cabins of civil helicopters. Martin-Baker America plans to build the seats at its facility in Johnstown, Pa.

The company’s multifunctional operator seat rotates, moves forward, aft and sideways and has vertical height adjustment. Optional accessories available include a standup harness and seat cushions certified for a medical operating environment. The company says the seat is exceptionally rugged without weight or cost penalties and can be adapted to any helicopter via a pallet that mounts to the cabin floor. Depending on options, the seat weighs 38 to 44 pounds. With its FAA certification process beginning soon, the operator seat is expected to cost about $22,000, according to Thomas Pavlik, Martin-Baker U.S. business development representative.

For civil operators looking for an extra cabin seat that takes up little space, folds out of the way when not in use and can be installed and removed quickly, Martin-Baker is offering its utility seats. These seats resemble bucket seats in race cars and also benefit from their military heritage. They can be wall mounted or attached to floor-to-ceiling supports and face forward, aft or sideways. The company also offers an “executive cover” for use when transporting a more discriminating clientele. The utility seat weighs 14 pounds, is expected to be priced about $3,000 and has not yet been certified.

Martin-Baker also provides all the seats for the Sikorsky S-92, both crew and passenger, military and civilian. It is showing examples of its S-92 seats and the new multifunctional operator seat here at Heli-Expo 2005 (Booth No. 2953.)