FAA Awards Helicopter Hums Agreement to HAI

 - September 22, 2010, 10:40 AM

Health and usage monitoring systems (Hums) have been available for integration with fixed-wing flight deck avionics for some time. The idea is to have a central point that monitors aircraft systems to provide an up-to-the-minute look at the overall health of the aircraft. An indication of excessive temperature, for example, could foreshadow a component or system failure. Unlike fixed-wing aircraft, helicopters perform a variety of missions from heavy lift to transportation, meaning that the useful life of dynamic components varies widely from mission to mission, making predictions complex. “Until the advent of Hums, little consideration had been given to the life of a part based on actual usage. When fully implemented, Hums will provide an increase in safety and operational efficiency throughout the rotorcraft industry,” said Matthew Zuccaro, Helicopter Association International (HAI) president. The FAA Aviation Research Grants Program has awarded HAI a cooperative agreement to support research in the area of health and usage monitoring systems.