Posted by: Helicop Aviation | August 9, 2011

Rajasthan may get Helicopter Charter Services

Rajasthan may soon have helicopter taxis provided the government gives its nod to a proposal to start chartered air services. Affluent trusts recently submitted a proposal for the air taxi service to the government through the Jodhpur Divisional Commissioner recently.

Initially, the proposal had been floated considering the religious areas of interest in the state and the fact that most of the trusts behind the proposal are religious trusts. However, the service is likely to be extended to anyone willing to avail it, as the state is grappling with an abject lack of qualitative and quick means of transport, especially in view of long distances, according to a report by Ajay Parmar in The Times of India.

R K Jain, Divisional Commissioner, Jodhpur said that the state has been cut off in terms of air connectivity, particularly when it comes to chartered flights, which has been a hurdle on prospects concerning both tourism and industry. “Though considerable improvement in surface transport has taken place in the past few years, hardly any initiative has been taken with regard to air connectivity. The growth rate of the state can be further expedited with faster mode of transport,” he said, highlighting that 18 prosperous religious trusts of the state have offered to fund a fleet of helicopters and run it on a “no loss-no profit” basis.

Suggesting a broad action plan for the proposal, Jain said, “I have proposed to the government that if the proposal is approved, these trusts are ready to run this service through a properly managed mechanism.”

Welcoming the idea, Govind Singh Rathore, a tourism entrepreneur, said there are many global tourists who skip some important destinations due to absence of proper air connectivity or due to absence of some quick means of transport. “This service will result in not only further exposure of the state as a tourist destination but also result in a spurt to the flow of tourists,” Singh opined.


Posted by: Helicop Aviation | August 6, 2011

Airventure Oshkosh Festival

The Experimental Aircraft Association’s Fly-In Convention, now known as EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, had its first gathering in September 1953 as a small part of the Milwaukee (Wis.) Air Pageant. The original EAA fly-in convention held at Wright-Curtiss Field (now Timmerman Field) was attended by only a handful of airplanes, mostly homebuilt and modified aircraft. Fewer than only 150 people registered as visitors. Over time, the larger Milwaukee Air Pageant has faded away but the EAA gathering has become the world’s premier aviation event.

EAA’s fly-in convention grew quickly in its first few years and by the late 1950s it had outgrown the area of the Milwaukee airport it was allowed to use. In 1959, the event moved to Rockford (Ill.) Municipal Airport, where it would stay for the next decade. The “Rockford Years” were where the EAA Fly-In Convention established both its prominence as a homebuilders’ event and its friendly feeling that has retained to this day. During these years, diverse aviation interests as Warbirds, antiques and aerobatic performers became part of the EAA event.

By 1969, it was apparent that the EAA Fly-In Convention now had simply become too large for the Rockford facility. EAA had grown from a home basement operation to an office and museum in the Milwaukee suburb of Franklin. The annual convention mirrored that growth, attracting hundreds of show-planes and tens of thousands of visitors.

In late 1969, the EAA board approved the move to Oshkosh. There was acreage surrounding the airport to handle the annual influx of airplanes, vehicles and tents. There were two lengthy runways (east/west and north/south) which did not cross, allowing greater traffic movement. There was only one problem – no Convention site or infrastructure existed in Oshkosh. EAA’s volunteer network was up to the task, however. Within six months, EAA members had created a home for the fly-in. That volunteer spirit continues today, as more than 4,000 people donate their time and talents to help prepare and coordinate the Convention’s grounds and activities.

By 1980s, the Convention had exploded into national prominence. Attendance jumped into six figures each year and the event became one of sport aviation’s top gatherings.

By 1998 Fly-In Convention came to be known as EAA AirVenture Oshkosh it now serves as one of the world’s premier aviation events, attracting top government officials, corporate leaders and hundreds of thousands of aviation enthusiasts. It spans the entire spectrum of aviation and attracts 10,000 airplanes each year with more than 500,000 aviation enthusiasts who attend the week-long event annually.

Today, EAA AirVenture Oshkosh, regarded as “The World’s Greatest Aviation Celebration” is an international gathering place for aviation enthusiasts. An AirVenture participant can experience and study the latest aircraft and innovations; discover new ideas and techniques from the nearly 1,000 forums and workshops; see aviation’s top personalities; or just talk airplanes with people from around the world. Here you can find warbirds, vintage, homebuilts, ultralights. Some aircrafts you would normally find in a hangar and others so unique they are the only one of its kind. EAA AIRVENTURE OSHKOSH has become important and influential but retains its friendly and personal feel – part of the reason the world comes to Oshkosh every year.

Whether you’re an aviation enthusiast or an aviation novice, AirVenture has something for you. No matter what your age, it is the place where you’ll be entertained, informed, and thrilled by the countless activities available that reflect the spirit of aviation all around. To get a feel for the recent EAA AirVenture Oshkosh which happened between 25th-31st July here is a video of the highlights which include aerobatics and pyrotechnics, opening Day concert, fly-In theatre, forums, workshops, and demonstrations, kidventure and theater in the woods:


For more information on the Oshkosh Festival, please refer to the following links:

“Spirit of Aviation” Video:

More Videos:


Photo Gallery:

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Posted by: Helicop Aviation | August 3, 2011

Interesting Helicopter Facts

  • That if the engine stops, the helicopter rotor continues to spin allowing the machine to slowly land, generally without crashing to the ground.
  • Helicopters are safest to fly in bad weather because they can slow down, stop and/or fly backwards or sideways.
  • Over 3 million lives have been saved by helicopters in both peacetime and wartime operations since the first person was rescued from the sea in 1944.
  • There are more than 11,000 civil helicopters operating just in the U.S. and more than 15,000 civil helicopters operating in more than 157 other countries around the world.
  • If you include military helicopters it is estimated that there are more than 45,000 operating worldwide.
  • Helicopters can be flown across oceans if additional fuel is made available or in-flight refueling is employed.
  • The Jesus nut that holds the main rotor to the shaft got its name because pilots said, “Oh Jesus, if that nut comes off…”.
  • The fastest helicopter is the Westland Lynx, which flew at 402 km/h on 6 August 1986.
  • The biggest helicopter was the Russian Mil Mi-12 Homer of 1968 which could lift 40,204 kg up to 2255 m.
Posted by: Helicop Aviation | July 29, 2011

Interesting Fact

Why commercial jetliner captain sits on the left hand seat and a helicopter captain on the right hand side of a helicopter?

The reason why a commercial jetliner captain sits on the left hand seat seems to be rather historical in nature. During the end of the First World War, most powerful fighter aircraft were designed and fitted with rotary engines. It was found that when it came to steering these rotary-engine aircraft, turns to the left were easier because it follows the torque of the engine whereas turns to the right were harder as it was against the torque (twisting) forces. Hence it would require more rudder movement to compensate for the forces. Because of this, pilots chose to turn left as a more convenient maneuver and thus most traffic patterns in the air around airfields involved mainly left turns.

When bigger planes were designed with side-to-side seating, the co-pilot was made to sit on the right. The left-hand seat was made exclusively for the captain. It comes with complete flight instruments and controls. This seat also afforded better visibility with the assumption that more frequent left turns are made. So, during the early days of aviation, the fact that the pilot was occupying the left seat made it logical for aircraft to keep to the right side along the airways. Early aviators would often navigate visually by following roads and railways. Opposite traffic along the same line would then pass each other on the left. Because of the tradition that arose from the rotary engines, jet planes today continue to have the captain sitting on the left-hand side of the cockpit.

Helicopter, on the other hand are generally designed so that the captain sits on the right side of the aircraft. From a practical point of view, this seat enables him to keep his (usually stronger) right hand on the cyclic control at all times leaving the radios and engine to be controlled from his (usually weaker) left hand. The collective lever, handled by his left hand, is used to increase or decrease the total rotor thrust, whereas the cyclic control changes rotor thrust direction.

In a hover (flying stationary), changes in collective pitch will result in a different height above the ground and in a forward flight, changes in collective pitch change the amount of thrust available. This can result in either a change in altitude or speed depending on how the pilot moves the cyclic. The collective lever has twist grip throttle control and works like a motorcycle twist grip. So the collective lever which, while certainly needing to be guarded, can briefly be left alone while the pilot uses his left hand to operate other control such as radio switches. Because of this practicality, this position is preferred by most helicopter pilots and thus the convention has been maintained.

Posted by: Helicop Aviation | July 28, 2011

Pawan Hans resumes Helicopter services in Northeast.

State-owned Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd, which suspended its services in six northeastern states after Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Dorjee Khandu and four others were killed in a crash, has resumed operations in the region. “We have asked all our bases in the northeastern region to resume helicopter services in the six states,” a senior Pawan Hans official said from the firm’s corporate office in Noida.

“On Tuesday, services with double-engine choppers instead of previous single-engine aircraft have resumed in Tripura and Sikkim. Gradually, this would start in other states,” the official said.

According to the official, services were resumed after a thorough check of all aircraft. The decision to suspend operations in Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya, Tripura, Sikkim, Nagaland and Manipur came after the April 30 crash that killed Khandu and two pilots, a personal security officer and the sister of the Tawang legislator. A few days earlier, on April 19, 17 people were killed when a Pawan Hans helicopter crashed at the Tawang helipad, located at an altitude of 11,000 feet, in Arunachal Pradesh just as it was about to land.

Tripura Transport Secretary Kishore Ambuly said “Following the directive of the union home ministry, the Tripura government had earlier floated a tender to operate chopper services. Pawan Hans and a few other private companies had also participated in the offer and the state run company won the tender. Earlier the copter services were operated like other states of northeast India following an agreement between Pawan Hans and the Tripura government,” Ambuly said.

Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma had taken up the issue with his counterparts in northeastern states to pressurise Pawan Hans and the central government to replace the age-old choppers in the region, a Tripura official said on the condition of anonymity. He said Sangma had suggested operating double-engine choppers instead of single-engine aircraft in the northeast. However, a Pawan Hans official here said that was not an issue.

“Many helicopters with double-engines, including that of former Andhra Pradesh chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy and former Lok Sabha speaker G.M.C. Balayogi, have crashed in different parts of India,” he said.

India’s lone national helicopter company, Pawan Hans has been operating services for nine years in the northeast, the union home ministry subsidising fares by up to 75%. “Pawan Hans was established with the primary objective of providing helicopter support services to the oil sector for offshore exploration operations, services in remote and hilly areas and charter services for promotion of tourism,” the company’s official document said.

Source Link:

Posted by: Helicop Aviation | July 27, 2011

Jet plans to merge JetLite & Konnect

Jet Airways is considering merging JetLite and Konnect into a single low-cost brand. Although no decision has been taken yet, the airline is evaluating options regarding a possible merger.

Eventually, the airline will have a single brand in full service and low-cost category, Jet Airways vice-president (investor relations) K G Vishwanath told analysts at a post-result conference call.

Jet Konnect is a no frills service launched by the airline two years ago. The experiment has been successful because the carrier has been able to use the same planes on a full service model or for a no-frills service depending upon the market conditions.

Since Jet Airways and JetLite (earlier Air Sahara) have separate operating permits, transfer of plans from one to another brand would require regulatory approval. Instead of doing so, the airline decided to create an another low-cost brand in the group. About 75 per cent of its domestic flights are now operated on the Konnect brand, but this figure varies from season to season.

JetLite was launched after the airline acquired Air Sahara. It operates 110 flights daily compared to 170 Konnect flights. The airline management also acknowledges that JetLite profitability in the first quarter came under pressure after other carriers dropped fares.

Source Link:

Mahindra Aerospace and Mahindra Satyam have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for a trade partnership with the Eurocopter Group and its Indian subsidiary, Eurocopter India. The partnership will be focused on manufacturing of sub assemblies, engineering and customization of civil helicopters and the joint development of specific market segments.

Lutz Bertling, President and CEO of Eurocopter pointed out that “the synergies between our two companies will enhance our contributions to the Indian civil helicopter market.”

Mr. Hemant Luthra, Chairman of Mahindra Aerospace and President and Member of the Group Executive Board of Mahindra & Mahindra said, “We are delighted to work with the world’s leading helicopter manufacturer to contribute to the growth of the Indian aeronautical industry and civil aircraft market. Eurocopter has a solid, long term strategy for the growth of the India market, while we are already creating a niche for ourselves in the fixed-wing aircraft and aerostructures manufacturing space. We see this MOU as a significant step forward for both of us as well as the domestic aviation industry.”

“Mahindra Satyam has been providing IT and Engineering Services to the aerospace sector, and has been providing solutions to Airbus for the last several years. We are already closely engaged with the EADS Group and feel proud to be associated with Eurocopter, to provide our engineering capabilities for their range of products. This underscores our commitment and ambition to be a leading provider of value added services for the sector,” commented Mr. C P Gurnani, CEO of Mahindra Satyam.

Eurocopter is the first and only foreign helicopter manufacturer to have a dedicated Indian subsidiary. One of the key priorities of the subsidiary is to identify synergies and opportunities for partnerships with local companies to strengthen the helicopter industry in India.

Source Link:

AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, was pleased to announce the launch of UK involvement in the AW169 commercial helicopter programme with the support of a £22 million loan by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills. The announcement was made today by the Rt Hon Dr Vince Cable MP, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills during a visit to AgustaWestland’s Yeovil factory.

Bruno Spagnolini, CEO, AgustaWestland said following the announcement, “Today marks the beginning of a new era for our Yeovil factory and for its UK supply network. We are confident that the AW169 will be a great success in the market place and now every AW169 helicopter sold will incorporate key rotorcraft technologies developed in the UK and critical helicopter systems manufactured in the UK.” Ray Edwards, Managing Director, AgustaWestland said, “The start of AW169 commercial helicopter work at AgustaWestland’s Yeovil factory is a central element of AgustaWestland UKs diversification strategy to protect and grow the skills and capabilities required for a strong helicopter industry in the UK. The AW169 design and development work will mainly take place over the next three years with deliveries to customers starting in 2015.”

AgustaWestland and its many suppliers in the UK will play a major role in the design, development and manufacture of the rotor blades and intermediate and tail gearboxes and tail rotor hub, thus keeping Yeovil as a world centre of excellence in these key rotorcraft technological areas. AgustaWestland’s Yeovil facility will also undertake flight testing with one of the four AW169 prototypes and lead the development of the training infrastructure and courseware for aircrew and ground crew training. The commercial helicopter market is a new sector for UK advanced manufacturing, with the UK helicopter market being the largest in Europe. The UK commercial helicopter market, in both the public and private sectors, will also now be able to purchase a helicopter with a UK pedigree, with a full suite of support capabilities available onshore. AgustaWestland is forecasting sales of nearly 1000 AW169 helicopters worldwide over a 25 year period. A versatile, new generation twin engine light intermediate category helicopter, the AW169 has been designed in response to the growing market demand for an aircraft that delivers high performance, meets all the latest safety standards and has multi-role capabilities. The 4.5 ton AW169 will incorporate several new technology features to provide the highest levels of safety and operational benefits for its customers. New generation technologies are incorporated in the rotor system, engines, avionics, transmission and electric power generation and distribution systems. The AW169 is set to be the most advanced and cost-effective helicopter in its class for EMS/SAR, law enforcement, passenger and offshore transport and utility missions.

Source Link:

Posted by: Helicop Aviation | July 25, 2011

India’s first military pilot to fly helicopters dead

Air Commodore S K Majumdar, the first military pilot to fly helicopter in India in March 1954, passed away on July 20th. He was 83.

He passed away at 4 a.m. at the Research and referral Hospital, Delhi Cantt.

He had the distinction of being the first pilot in the Indian defence and para-military forces to fly the helicopter in India. He pioneered the concepts of usage of helicopter in India.

Born on October 7, 1927, Air Commodore Majumdar was commissioned in the Royal Indian Air Force in 1948 and retired in March 1977 after 29 years of distinguished service. During his long innings in the Indian Air Force, he achieved many firsts. He was the first to fly a helicopter, an S-55 Sikorsky, in 1954. He was the first helicopter qualified flying instructor, the first to do an amphibious operation, the founder of the helicopter training unit of the Indian Air Force and the first to carry out a roof-top landing in 1959.

A pioneer in mountain terrain operations, Air Commodore Majumdar evolved concepts of mountain flying in erstwhile NEFA (Arunachal Pradesh), Assam, Nagaland and Jammu and Kashmir, and displayed an astonishing degree of dedication and professionalism. Having shown his exemplary mettle in various command and staff appointments during his illustrious career, he also acquired enviable accident free record.

In recognition of his yeoman service and pioneering work in the field of helicopter aviation, he was awarded “Sikorsky Pioneering Award” in 2004 by the Rotary Wing Society of India.

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Posted by: Helicop Aviation | July 18, 2011

Eurocopter in Aero India 2011

Eurocopter’s AS550 C3 Fennec helicopter made its Indian public debut at Aero India 2011 exhibition in Bangalore, showcasing the candidate for India’s acquisition of new rotary-wing aircraft in reconnaissance and surveillance missions.

The AS550 C3 Fennec completed its field trials with full mission equipment for the Indian Armed Forces’ reconnaissance and surveillance applications, demonstrating its capabilities as the successor to the country’s existing fleet of Indian-produced Cheetah and Chetak helicopters – both of which are based on Eurocopter rotary-wing aircraft.

“We are very happy with the Fennec’s performance during the recent trials, and are confident it is the ideal proposition as the rightful successor to the Cheetah and Chetak,” explained Rainer Farid, the Eurocopter Vice President of Sales for South Asia. “By participating in the key competitive tenders with our best products, we hope to continue to support India in acquiring the right mission equipment and developing a strengthened aerospace industry.”

The military-certified and combat-proven AS550 C3 Fennec has exceptional performance at high altitudes and in hot weather conditions. In addition to operating in Chile’s Andes Mountains at altitudes of over 5,000 meters, Fennec helicopters have landed on Mount Everest and the Sziachin glacier in the Himalayas. Recently, a Royal Malaysian Navy Fennec assisted in the rescue of a hijacked Malaysian chemical tanker and its crew, firing on the Somali pirates’ mother ship to keep it at bay.

Along with the Fennec’s presence at Aero India 2011, Eurocopter’s participation focused on the AS565 Naval Panther – a version of the Dauphin family, which is well suited for requirements of the Indian Navy and Coast Guard. The Panther is used around the world in a wide range of roles, including combat assault, fire support, anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, search and rescue, and MEDEVAC.

Also spotlighted at Aero India 2011 was the Eurocopter’s EC135 in the HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Services) configuration. The EC135 is tailored for HEMS operations, with a large cabin, rear and slide access for easier stretcher loading, a protected tail rotor and the lowest noise signature in its category. It is the world reference for medical transportation and rescue, and the sales perspectives of this helicopter are high in India.

Eurocopter currently holds a leading position in the Indian military and civil markets, building this presence through strong partnerships. For the military sector, Eurocopter developed a very successful 40-year association in India through two cooperation agreements with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). Today, HAL is a key element of Eurocopter’s global supply chain, producing shipsets of airframe components for its Ecureuil/Fennec helicopters. In the civil market, Eurocopter has successfully formed partnerships for 25 years with Pawan Hans Helicopter Limited which is Eurocopter approved maintenance center on Dauphin. Eurocopter also approved the Indocopters maintenance centre on AS350 B3 and EC155.

Eurocopter inaugurated its Indian subsidiary in October 2010, reinforcing its support and services network throughout the country and further developing the company’s four-decade relationship with Indian industry. Eurocopter is the world’s first major helicopter manufacturer to establish such a subsidiary in India, which underscores its commitment to the development of this market.

“The Indian helicopter industry has displayed great potential over the last few years with an annual growth rate of 20 percent,” explained Marie-Agnès Veve, the CEO of Eurocopter India Pvt. Ltd. “Given the country’s expanding economy, its size and challenging terrain – as well as the industrial potential – the future of this industry is very promising. Over the next few years, we hope to become the no. 1 supplier for the civilian, government and parapublic markets in India.”

Eurocopter currently has 23 civil and government customers operating its helicopter products in India, with these rotary-wing aircraft performing duties that range from the support of offshore oil and gas drilling to VIP, corporate and passenger transportation. In addition to reinforcing its current presence, Eurocopter also is working with Indian institutions, companies and associations to develop new markets such as law enforcement, helicopter emergency medical services, disaster management and utility.

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