Bell Helicopter is developing a new “short, light single” (SLS) that will be powered by a Turbomeca Arrius 2R turboshaft engine, John Garrison, president and CEO, announced yesterday morning at the Paris Air Show. The “clean sheet” aircraft, which Garrison expects will fly next year, will be the first Bell helicopter to be powered by a Turbomeca engine. Certification of the new helicopter will take place “as quickly as possible” after the first flight.
John Garrison, president and CEO of Bell Helicopter, announced yesterday morning at the Paris Air Show that it is developing a new “short, light single” (SLS) helicopter that will be powered by a Turbomeca Arrius 2R turboshaft engine. The new, “clean sheet” aircraft, which Garrison said is expected to fly next year, will be the first Bell helicopter to be powered by a Turbomeca engine. Certification of the new helicopter will take place “as quickly as possible” after the first flight.
India’s small-but-strategic South Asian neighbors, including Bangladesh, Bhutan and Sri Lanka, will procure around 30 helicopters in different categories in the next five years, according to an internal study conducted by Sikorsky.
While Indian military helicopter procurement plans are for more than 1,000 helicopters by 2020, including light utility, attack, Mi-17 medium transport, heavy-lift and multi-role platforms, even as its GDP grew by over 6 percent last year, Bangladesh has the largest budget for procurement in the Indian periphery.
More than 8,000 Russian rotorcraft are in operation in more than hundred countries around the world–twenty types and around forty variants with major upgrades. Their manufacturer, Russian Helicopters (Hall 2a, Stand C198), which claims it has 14 percent of the world’s fleet, reported a profit of Roubles 9.4 billion ($300 million) in 2012–and a hefty 21 percent rise in revenues, to RUB125.7 billion.
British Helicopter Association CEO Peter Norton has urged UK authorities to abandon plans for new restrictions on rotorcraft operations over urban areas following the January 16 accident in which an AgustaWestland A109 Power crashed in central London. The crash prompted British Prime Minister David Cameron to order a review of helicopter operating rules, and an Air Accidents Investigation Branch inquiry is in progress.
Eurocopter announced today that its X3 compound helicopter demonstrator flew at 255 knots in level flight on Friday near Istres in southeast France. Also part of the unofficial speed record was a descent at 263 knots. These speeds are just a few knots higher than those the Sikorsky X2 semi-compound demonstrator attained in 2010.
Rockwell Collins announced today that it will be launching a series of technologies next week at the Paris Airshow that will provide helicopter pilots with “unprecedented situational awareness to help them meet the challenges of flying in an increasingly congested and hazard-filled airspace.” Details about the new offering will be announced on Monday at the show, it said, and technology demonstrations will be featured in the “Helicopter Situational Awareness” portion of the Rockwell Collins exhibit (Hall 2B, Stand D108).
The U.S. Army’s Aviation Applied Technology Directorate selected Bell Helicopter Textron, a Boeing-Sikorsky team and AVX Aircraft among contractors invited to participate in the joint multi-role technology demonstrator (JMR-TD) program with new rotorcraft designs, the companies confirmed. They expect the Army will award JMR-TD contracts by September. The first demonstrator flights are planned in 2017.
The FAA has proposed an Airworthiness Directive for the Eurocopter AS332C, AS332L, AS332L1, AS332L2 and EC225LP. It requires inspecting the intermediate gearbox (IGB) fairing for a crack and inspecting the IGB fairing gutter, if installed, for a crack, separation or interference.
Both Los Angeles County and the L.A. City fire departments took the unusual step of flying night helicopter water drops over the weekend on the fast-spreading “Powerhouse” fire, which so far has consumed more than 32,000 acres. As of this morning, the fire, just north of Los Angeles, was classified as 60-percent contained. L.A. County dropped water on the fire from its two specially modified Sikorsky S-70 Firehawks, while L.A. City flew a Bell 412.