Sensor Technology (Booth No. C2432) announced upgrades to the HeliNav LoadMaster wireless load monitoring system for helicopter-mounted cargo hooks at Heli-Expo ’13. The system checks the actual weight of an under-slung load 10 times every second and displays that information on a cockpit-mounted display. The data may also be stored in the system for downloading post-flight.
News and issues regarding all manner of civil and military rotorcraft and their powerplants, including helicopters, tiltrotors and unmanned air vehicles.
An aviation maintenance technician’s self-portrait of his solitary work one evening on the swashplate friction of a large-cabin helicopter was recently awarded top honors in the first-ever photo contest in Rotor magazine, the official publication of Helicopter Association International (HAI).
Pablo Linares of Fort Worth, Texas, used a small digital camera mounted on a tripod to capture his work under the lights. In accepting the grand prize of $500, Linares stated the photo demonstrated that, “Behind a great aviation department, there is always a great maintenance crew.”
Erickson Air-Crane has executed a binding term sheet to acquire the Air Amazonia aerial services business from Brazilian oil and gas exploration and production firm HRT Partcipacoes em Petroleo. The move supersedes a non-binding letter of intent Erickson submitted in September 2012.
American Helicopter Society International (AHS International, Booth No. N6304) is marking its 70th anniversary here at Heli-Expo. With 6,100 members from 44 countries, AHS International is dedicated to finding technical solutions for vertical lift, including solving the challenge of human-powered vertical flight. AHS International is offering a $250,000 prize, funded by Sikorsky Aircraft (founded by one of the organization’s charter members, Igor Sikorsky) to the designer(s) of a helicopter that can hover for at least one minute at least 9.84 feet over a 32.8-foot-sided square.
Vector Financial Services Ireland announced at Heli-Expo ’13 availability of a fleet of customized Super Puma AS332Ls, including new leasing and hourly support options, aimed at utility operators in the European Union, UN and NATO countries.
“Our lease program gives customers the ability to operate a Super Puma AS332L helicopter…without the large capital investment associated with outright purchase of either a second-hand aircraft or the associated typical aircraft financial lease type obligations,” said Vector UK managing director Michael Tyrell.
Heli-Expo 2013 has another day of deal-making to go, but as of yesterday afternoon manufacturers report they’ve already racked up firm orders, options and letters of intent (LOI) totaling at least 226 helicopters. A breakdown of the action appears on page 21.
The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) held a meeting yesterday at Heli-Expo to share its experience with the government/industry working group designed to rewrite FAR Part 23 certification rules for fixed-wing aircraft and encourage the helicopter industry to apply the model for possible revision of Parts 27 and 29 helicopter certification standards.
Worldwide deliveries of new civil helicopters will total between 4,900 and 5,600 units over the next five years, according to the results of Honeywell’s 15 annual Turbine-Powered Civil Helicopter Purchase Outlook survey, which was released this week at Heli-Expo 2013. The forecast shows strong demand focused in the first three years of the period and reflected in every region of the world. This means that demand in 2016 and 2017 will determine whether the low or high-range of the forecast is realized.
State-owned Aviation Industry Corp. of China (Avic) brought its Avicopter rotorcraft unit to Heli-Expo for the first time.
Bell Helicopter signed a memorandum of understanding with Van Horn Aviation to develop a composite tail rotor blade for the Bell 212 and Bell 412. Under the agreement, Van Horn will design, certify and manufacture the rotor blades, with Bell Helicopter Engineering participating in the design and certification processes. When certified, the blades will be distributed under Bell Helicopter’s Aeronautical Accessories brand.