Performance where it's needed

 - July 24, 2007, 10:29 AM

Boundary Layer Research has won FAA approval for a hover-performance increase of up to 250 pounds for Bell 204Bs, 205A-1s and UH-1Hs fitted with its tailboom strake modification kits. Known as the Performance Pack, the new clearance is the result of high-density-altitude flight tests conducted last summer near Greybull, Wyo.

Dave George, BLR’s rotorcraft manager, said current customers will not have to buy new kits since a flight-manual supplement is available. “We were able to maintain the expanded pedal safety margins at the critical wind azimuth offered by the strakes, and still provide a performance increase where operators need it–high and hot,” he said.

The tailboom strake kit is based on NASA-patented technology licensed to BLR in 1998. Since then the company has optimized and adapted the technology to various civil and military helicopter models. Last year the U.S. Navy purchased kits for all Navy and Marine UH-1Ns.

The Everett, Wash.-based company said kits for larger Bells, such as the 212 and 412, should receive FAA certification later this year.