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.
Helitowcart unveiled its new dual-wheel assembly for the Robinson R44 and R66 at Heli-Expo ’13, adding to its line of helicopter handling devices and accessories. Like the company’s other dual-wheel assemblies, the Robinson kit caters to personnel operating on rugged terrain, or who wish to distribute aircraft weight on four tires. The wheel assembly offers two possible heights, is constructed from heavy-duty materials and offers long-arm control to ease rotation. The assembly is also designed to maintain solid contact with the helicopter skid.
With the new S-76D leading the way, Sikorsky is looking forward to a healthy market for its commercial helicopter division.
According to S-76 program manager Leon Silva, the S-76D is built on “a timeless design” represented by more than 700 S-76 models flying in 46 countries. While the S-76 corporate/VIP fleet has logged a total of 642,000 flight hours, that number barely registers in comparison to the 4.07 million flight hours accumulated in support of offshore oil production.
State-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (Avic, Booth No. C1521) brought its Avicopter rotorcraft unit for the first time to Heli-Expo.
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.
Scott’s-Bell 47 announced yesterday at Heli-Expo that it will build new Bell 47 helicopters, dubbed the 47-GT6, powered by the Rolls-Royce RR300 engine. The $820,000 iconic bubble-canopied helicopter will be built from scratch, not remanufactured, and will be based on the 47G-3B-2A type design that has a 3,200-pound max gross weight with external load. Internal useful load will be 1,400 pounds, and external load 1,650 pounds.
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.
MD Helicopters’ MD 540F armed scout helicopter made its debut at Heli-Expo this week in Las Vegas. The new model replaces its predecessor MD 530F’s Rolls-Royce 250-C30 turboshaft with the new M250-C47E, which offers dual-channel Fadec and boosts available rated takeoff power to 700 shp.
Eurocopter promised to bring its next-generation Dauphin–the X4 medium twin helicopter–to the Heli-Expo show next year in Anaheim, Calif. The new helicopter, which will include straked rotor blades and a fly-by-wire system, will be offered with a Pratt & Whitney Canada PW210 or Turbomeca TM800 turboshaft engine. First flight is scheduled for 2016, with certification planned for 2017. Meanwhile, the company said yesterday at Heli-Expo that it is working on X6 and X9 helicopters, but it would not release any details on these future designs.
State-owned Aviation Industry Corp. of China (Avic) brought its Avicopter rotorcraft unit to Heli-Expo for the first time.