On September 26, the Canadian Coast Guard recovered an MBB BO105 helicopter that crashed and sank in the M’Clure Straits of the Arctic Ocean earlier in the month, killing all three men aboard. Post-mortem examinations of the victims revealed that the three likely survived the impact but succumbed later from the effects of cold-water induced hypothermia. The commander of the icebreaker Amundsen was among the victims.
Chemical giant BASF is claiming its Basotect open-celled melamine foam is both improving sound insulation and saving weight in the Russian Helicopters Mi-8. Used for an executive cabin refurbishing, it has cut interior noise from 85 to 80 dB. It has also saved 530 pounds, compared with the previous insulation arrangement. The special foam is affixed to “selected noise-intensive points,” at a thickness of 40 mm.
E-A-R Thermal Acoustics Systems (Stand 2145) is improving acoustic insulation aboard business jets as it endeavors to cut the most annoying cabin noises on a case-by-case basis.
The FAA last month approved upgraded flammability standards for thermal and acoustic insulation materials used in Part 25 (transport category) aircraft. Revised standards include new tests and criteria that address flame propagation and entry into the cabin of an external fire.
Last week, representatives from industry associations met with the FAA to discuss new regulations regarding aircraft insulation that they believe pose “a serious threat to continued operation after September 2 of many in-service Part 25 aircraft.” The meeting was called in response to a letter to FAA Administrator Marion Blakey that called for “an immediate 180-day extension” to the regulations.
The FAA has issued clarifying bulletins, set up a team of specialists that can be contacted 24/7 and is considering amending its controversial rule upgrading flammability standards for thermal and acoustic fuselage insulation. The rule, which became effective September 2, poses a "serious threat to the continued operation of Part 25 [certified] aircraft," according to trade groups.
The FAA extended by 24 months–to Sept. 2, 2009–the date for affected regional and major airline operators to comply with new Part 25 fire safety requirements for thermal/acoustic insulation used in transport-category airplanes manufactured after September 2 this year.
New regulations regarding aircraft thermal and acoustic insulation have been amended in response to concerns raised by the business aviation industry that the requirements–effective Sept. 2, 2005-applied to a much broader range of components in in-service airplanes than was originally intended.
The National Air Transportation Association still has concerns regarding the recently published requirements for improved flammability characteristics of thermal/acoustic insulation used as replacements on aircraft manufactured before Sept. 2, 2005.
Qinetiq is here at the Paris Air Show with a new sunscreen for heat-sensitive aircraft. The UK-based research company has developed a new range of solar heat reflective coatings. The so-called low solar load (LSL) technology is aimed at reducing air-conditioning, insulation and heat-resistant materials needs.
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