Mineral Wells, Texas-based Cobham Commercial Systems (Booth No. C715) recently received European and Chinese STC approvals for its HeliSAS, a helicopter stability augmentation system and autopilot. HeliSAS is a two-axis, attitude-hold/attitude-command flight control system that “significantly reduces pilot workload and allows pilots to perform many cockpit functions hands free,” according to Cobham. The stability augmentation system (SAS) enhances flight stability by providing precise control during all modes of flight, regardless of wind conditions or aircraft center of gravity, the company further noted.
The EASA certification allows installation of HeliSAS on several Eurocopter models, including the AS350B/B1/B2/B3/BA/D and EC130B4, throughout the European Union. First installations of the SAS/autopilot device on European-registered Eurocopters started last month.
Meanwhile, the Civilian Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) STC allows HeliSAS to be installed on Bell 407s in that country. “CAAC approval is truly ground breaking,” said Cobham Commercial Systems general manager Roger Smith. “China is one of the fastest growing aviation markets in the world, and we’re pleased to be able to make HeliSAS available to hundreds of Bell 407 operators there.”
In other news at the company, Life Flight Network has selected Cobham’s digital audio control system for its 15 new AgustaWestland AW119Kx helicopters. The Aurora, Ore.-based aeromedical transport provider is the launch customer for the AW119Kx and is to take delivery of its first aircraft this year.