AvQuotes.com uses the Internet to match people seeking maintenance with more than 50 maintenance facilities. It’s a simple, logical idea that apparently never occurred to anyone before Sheldon Early and his wife went to lunch one afternoon. “Six years ago I was at Stevens Aviation as vice president of business development,” Early, AvQuotes president, told AIN.
The launch customers of the Kamov Ka-226 helicopter–the Moscow city government and fossil-fuel company RAO Gazprom–have begun pilot training and operational trials using semi-experimental machines. Their goal is to qualify crews before production helicopters enter service this month or next.
Frank Robinson, the 74-year-old firm-handed founder, chairman and president of Robinson Helicopter, says that as long as he’s sitting behind the big desk he’ll do exactly what he pleases. What pleases him? “Keeping it simple,” he explained, “and when I retire or die, whoever takes my place, hopefully, keeps that long-standing philosophy of mine alive.”
Robinson Helicopter CEO Frank Robinson has convinced the El Salvador National Police force that they should downshift to piston-powered helicopters. The OEM’s dealer in capital San Salvador, Regilio Pena of Helica SA, brought the director of police over
CHC Helicopter is scaling back its offices in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada, as part of a restructuring plan. The COO and financial staff are moving to the company’s office in Vancouver, B.C. CEO Craig Dobbin said that although the company will maintain an office in St. John’s, there will be some layoffs–but he plans to hold off on these for at least six months. Dobbin apparently considered beefing up the office in St.
A mystery buyer has bought nearly half the shares in one of the world’s biggest helicopter operators, Russia’s UTair Aviation. UTair, heavily involved in United Nations peacekeeping operations from East Timor to Iraq, has worked with the UN since the collapse of the Soviet Union and, with a fleet of nearly 200 rotorcraft, is one of its biggest helicopter service providers.
Fledgling helicopter commuter airline America Rising has pushed back to 2006 the launch of its New York to Washington, D.C. rotorcraft shuttle service, blaming a lack of suitably de-ice-equipped helicopters and continued delay in gaining approval for the operation from the Transportation Security Administration.
The first production Eurocopter EC 225 medium twin made its maiden flight in late June. Eurocopter said the “flawless” event lasted just over two hours. The EC 225 is powered by two Turbomeca Makila 2A modular turboshafts, an engine that has just been certified by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). Each of the powerplants generates 2,413 shp in contingency mode–14 percent more than the previous model.
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.
Last year was something of a landmark in helicopter firefighting activity. During one of the driest summers on record in the northern hemisphere, rotorcraft were deployed for long periods–often to areas where they had not been needed before–to stem the progress of flames.