The European Aviation Safety Agency has granted approval of a recent FAA-approved rotor blade tape installation STC for Robinson R22s and R44s. Airworthiness Directive 2007-26-12 was issued to address delamination of the helicopters’ main rotor blades.
Subsequently Airwolf Aerospace’s patented blade tape solution won the final authority by the FAA of an Alternative Method of Compliance (AMOC). Both the EASA and FAA confirm that installation of Airwolf’s product provides approved levels of safety.
The AMOC permits all R22 and R44 operators to use Airwolf’s tape solution if visual inspections show that the rotor blades are not airworthy and eliminates the need for daily preflight visual checks, which would otherwise be obligatory under the requirements of the AD. The AMOC also supersedes and removes the restriction on installation of “blade tapes (anti-erosion tapes)” that Robinson recently added to its maintenance manuals.
Airwolf’s solution STC-SR02491CH is a one-time repair using a unique adhesive polymer tape to prevent permanently the leading-edge skin debonding, which occurs when the bond line is exposed due to excessive erosion of the blade finish, or when corrosion occurs on the internal aluminum tip cap.