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Second Sikorsky CH-53K ‘almost ready’ to join test campaign

After a slow start, the Sikorsky CH-53K development project is gathering pace at West Palm Beach, Florida, with sixth test flights and counting since initial lift-off in late October and a second aircraft almost complete. The US Marine Corps announced this week that one of its own pilots flew the King Stallion, taking over from Sikorsky’s test team for the first time. Lt Col Jonathan M...

New JV formed to market Saab's Skeldar UAV

Saab has formed a joint venture with UMS Aero Group that will take responsibility of marketing the former's Skeldar V-200 unmanned helicopter. UMS Skeldar will “strengthen Saab’s offerings in the tactical UAV market”, and the Skeldar division of Saab and all its assets – including the air vehicles, ground control stations, and training systems – will move to th...

SENER Delivers the First Helicopter to the Spanish Navy of the AB212 Life Extension Program

The SENER engineering and technology group, in a joint venture with INAER, the main helicopters operator in Spain, has delivered the first Agusta Bell 212 (AB212) helicopter to the Directorate-General of Armament and Material (DGAM) of the Spanish Ministry of Defense, after completing the first phase of its modernization that will extend the operational life of seven AB212 helicopters by at least...

Russian Helicopters takes part in Trade and Industrial Dialogue: Russia-Iran 2015

Russian Helicopters Holding Company taking part in the Russian National Industrial Exhibition - Trade and Industrial Dialogue: Russia – Iran 2015, which is being held under the supervision of the Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation Denis Manturov in Tehran, December 21-23. During the exhibition, the holding company will showcase Russian civilian helicopters. The headl...

Australia set to acquire three more CH-47F Chinooks

The US Department of State has approved the possible sale of three more Boeing CH-47F Chinook helicopters to Australia. The potential Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program deal, which is valued at US$180 million and includes related equipment and support, would take the Australian Army’s fleet size to 10 aircraft. Boeing said it delivered the seventh CH-47F for Army in Au...

700th R66 Rolls Off Production Line

Robinson’s 700th R66 turbine helicopter rolled off the production line on December 18, five years after the five-place helicopter received FAA certification. S/N 700 is an R66 Turbine Marine, which is an R66 equipped with pop-out floats. The helicopter will be delivered to Robinson dealer Air Technology Belgium. This will be the first Turbine Mari...

China-Russia Heavy Lift Helicopter Contract Deferred To Mid-2016

A contract to develop the Advanced Heavy Lift (AHL) helicopter should be signed between China's Avicopter and Russia's Rostec in mid-2016 instead of end-2015, Dmitry Shugaev, Deputy CEO of Rostec has said. "We can say that both sides have a desire to come together and finalize their contractual obligations as well as sign an intergovernmental agreement by the middle of next year. T...

Second Bell 525 joins test campaign with three following in 2016

Bell Helicopter’s first 525 “Relentless” commercial helicopter now has a companion on the test and certification campaignwith Flight Test Vehicle-2 (FTV-2) joining the programme last week, the company confirms. The company says it remains on track to achieve certification of the 9.1t super-medium-class helicopter in 2017, with three more developmental 525s coming online i...

Turbomeca Marks a Million Flight Hours with U.S. Coast Guard

Turbomeca (Safran) yesterday celebrated a major achievement: 1 million hours flown by U.S. Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphins fitted with the Arriel 2C2-CG engine. Operating a fleet of over 200 Arriels, the U.S.C.G. is one of Turbomeca’s major US customers. The occasion was celebrated in presence of U.S.C.G. Lieutenant Commander Edward S Apontes, and several Turbomeca represen...

Bell Helicopter Announces Chongqing General Aviation Group as New Bell Authorized Customer Service Facility in China

Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company, yesterday announced Chongqing General Aviation (CQGA), located in China’s Chongqing Provence, as Bell Helicopter’s newest authorized Customer Service Facility (CSF). CQGA has a 43,700 sq. ft. Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) part 145 certified maintenance facility and offers non-specialized maintenance capabilities for Bell...

Vector Aerospace certified for Airbus Helicopters H130/EC130 tail rotor gearbox repair and overhaul

Vector Aerospace, a global independent provider of aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services, added the Airbus Helicopters H130 (formerly EC130 T2) and EC130 B4 tail rotor gearbox (TGB) to its existing range of rotorcraft repair and overhaul (R&O) capabilities. Vector will offer this expanded support for the H130/EC130 from its facilities in Langley and Richmond, BC, Canada,...

Netherlands retires last Alouette III helicopters

After a service life spanning 51 years and more than 450,000 flight hours, the Royal Netherlands Air Force will retire its last four Aérospatiale SA316 Alouette III helicopters from use on 1 January, 2016. An official transfer from the air force's 300 Sqn to the Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) took place at Gilze Rijen air base on 15 December. Anno Gravemake...