The European Commission (EC) on July 9 officially launched the Clean Sky 2 joint technology initiative, a €4 billion ($5.44 billion) follow-on to the ongoing Clean Sky research program. It includes a number of projects for business aircraft–both turboprops and jets–as well as regional turboprops and rotorcraft.
Sikorsky expects the FAA to certify a higher mtow for its S-92 medium-twin helicopter this fall. The maximum allowable takeoff gross weight of the aircraft is being increased from 26,500 to 27,700 pounds, thus allowing operators to carry an additional 1,200 pounds of payload.
Genesys Aerosystems’ HeliSAS helicopter stability augmentation system (SAS) and autopilot received STC approval for retrofit installation in Robinson R44s. HeliSAS’s two-axis autopilot allows for heading and nav hold, as well as vertical speed and altitude hold. The system operates during all phases of flight so it can maintain or recover a neutral attitude automatically when the pilot releases the cyclic; the pilot resumes full control simply through normal cyclic handling.
The FAA has certified the Garmin G1000H all-glass, integrated flight deck for installation in the Enstrom 480B helicopter. It is designated the 480B-G. “Combining the G1000H with the safety and handling qualities of the 480B make this an exceptional helicopter for anything, including personal use, police work and training,” according to Bill Taylor, Enstrom’s director of engineering. “We partnered with RSG Aerodesign during the design phase, and that really helped get the project moving.
The FAA is proposing to adopt a new airworthiness directive for certain Sikorsky Model S-92A helicopters requiring the installation of a main gearbox (MGB) failed pump sensor and vacuum switch wiring, installing an MGB oil auto bypass system, activating aircraft management system (AMS) 7.1 software to show a new visual warning and installing updated enhanced ground proximity warning system software that includes an aural annunciation of a complete oil pressure loss condition.
Genesys Aerosystems’ HeliSAS helicopter stability augmentation system (SAS) and autopilot is now available for retrofit installation in Robinson R44 helicopters. The former Cobham subsidiary, which makes Chelton EFIS and STEC autopilot systems, was bought out by management in April.
Rotorcraft manufacturer Enstrom received FAA certification to install the Garmin G1000H glass cockpit in its 480B helicopter, which will be known as the 480B-G.
MD Helicopters (MDHI) has selected Precision Aviation Services (PAS) of Peachtree City, Georgia to be an Authorized MD Helicopters Service Center. PAS is approved to provide factory authorized service, including airframe maintenance, component overhaul parts and accessories sales, including parts and labor for warranty replacements. The approval covers MD 900/902 Explorer helicopters and 500- and 600-series helicopters, the complete line manufactured by MDHI.
Airbus Helicopters will lead the design of a compound rotorcraft demonstrator dubbed “LifeRCraft” (low-impact, fast and efficient rotorcraft) as part of Europe’s recently launched Clean Sky 2 Joint Technology Initiative. The LifeRCraft architecture combines a main rotor for vertical takeoff and landing, fixed wings for energy-efficient lift and open propellers for speed. The company will use experience gained on its X3 compound demonstrator between 2010 and 2013.
The pilot of an MBB-Kawasaki (Eurocopter) BK117B2 flying a trauma recovery mission at 5,000 feet agl in South Australia last year saw a number of hydraulic fluctuations on the helicopter’s system indicators just before the aircraft experienced an uncommanded and violent pitch up. That excursion was followed closely by a left roll and descent, according to the Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB).