Lightspeed Aviation of Portland, Oregon, has released FlightLink version 3.0, a free, proprietary app that allows for in-flight recording and adds enhanced functionality to all Lightspeed headsets.
EuroTec Vertical Flight Solutions has become a Genesys Aerosystems dealership, which includes providing installation services, sales and support for Genesys’ HeliSAS autopilot systems along with its line of avionics solutions.  
In September 2018, Schiebel helped bring the Red Bull Air Race World Championship to in Wiener Neustadt, Austria. Schiebel is based in Vienna, a 45-minute train ride north, but the company in 2006 opened up its primary production facility dedicated to the CAMCOPTER S-100 unmanned air system (UAS) in Wiener Neustadt.
WinAir of London, Ont., plans to unveil its Dashboards enhancement at the National Business Aviation Association’s (NBAA) convention and exhibition running in Orlando, Fla., from October 16 to 18. The company explains the enhancements will be available as an add-on option for all new WinAir Version 7 packages (Operator, Heliops, MRO, CAMO, Custom, and All Inclusive), and to existing clientele with specific modules in their current package.
Leonardo noted another milestone in the certification process of its TH-119 single-engine helicopter with the first ‘power on’ of the new Genesys Aerosystems avionics. The TH-119, according to Leonardo, is expected to perform its maiden flight this fall, with the goal of reaching FAA certification in the first quarter of 2019.
Onboard Systems International’s weighing system for the SA332 Super Puma aircraft has been STC certified by the FAA and EASA. Onboard has also submitted the system to Transport Canada for certification.
Garmin released multiple software upgrades and approvals across several products including the GTN 650/750 touchscreen navigators, G500 TXi/G600 TXi and G500/G600 flight displays, and the GFC 600 and GFC 500 autopilots.
Van Horn Aviation received a Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for composite main rotor blades installed on the Bell 206L LongRanger helicopter.
The FAA approved Robinson’s R66 cargo hook for installation. The optional cargo hook, listed for an MSRP of $28,000, carries external loads of up to 1,200 pounds. For external load operations, the R66’s maximum gross weight increases from 2,700 pounds to 2,900 pounds.
DART Aerospace of Hawkesbury, Ont., received certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for its new cable cutter system for the H130/EC130 family of aircraft. The company states Canadian and European validations for the H130/EC130 kit are coming shortly.
Aerometals, a privately held aerospace company located in the northern California town of El Dorado Hills, has received an FAA Supplemental Type Certification (STC) for Airbus Helicopters H130 (EC130T2) IBF System.
Donaldson Aerospace & Defense, a division of Donaldson Company, based in St. Louis, signed an agreement with Leonardo to develop two new Inlet Barrier Filters (IBF) for the AW169 helicopter.
ARA Robotics of Montreal, Quebec, which develops UAV technology, is set to unveil its new commercial flight controller, SKYMATE, which the company describes as providing reliability and safety for industrial drone operations. Built for multi-rotor UAV configurations, SKYMATE is targeted at applications such as 2D/3D aerial inspection and mapping. 

Brand reputation begins with the company name, and the mouthful that was Marenco Swisshelicopter (aka MSH) was too long. It was also too associated with company founder Martin Stucki — the name Marenco is derived from Martin Engineering and Consulting — who started the venture in 2007 in his family’s farmhouse.
Drone Delivery Canada has announced that it will start testing its Raven X1400 cargo delivery drone in Q1 of 2018.
The third H160 prototype has received a fresh coat of paint and now features a striking “carbon” livery designed as a nod to the Airbus A350 XWB MSN2 flight-test aircraft. Both aircraft are produced using advanced composite materials supplied by Airbus’ long term partner, Hexcel.
Unmanned Systems Canada has announced that the Government of Canada has released draft regulations for unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or drones) operations for public comment in Canada Gazette Part One.
Transport Canada's plan to patrol the Arctic with a drone has been delayed by at least two years, partly because the unmanned aircraft is so large it's considered a kind of missile and falls under complex arms-control rules.
Marc Garneau doesn’t scare easily. The federal Minister of Transport was the first Canadian astronaut to fly into space, spinning through the cosmos in 1984. He followed that up with two more shuttle missions in 1996 and 2000. But what keeps the former president of the Canadian Space Agency up at night? Nightmares of heat-shield failures or re-entries into Earth’s atmosphere gone amok? Nope. Would you believe: drones? The Montreal Gazette reports. | READ MORE
Aeryon Labs Inc.has announced that the Aeryon SkyRanger sUAS successfully completed the first Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) flight in Canada. The SkyRanger was chosen by Ventus Geospatial Inc. and Canadian Unmanned Inc., as the VTOL sUAS flown for Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) testing and evaluation throughout the trials at the Foremost UAS Range.
There are thousands of players in the Canadian aerospace industry, most of them flying under the radar as they try to build a solid client base along with a reputation as a reliable supplier. Many of these firms reside in Quebec, where more than 200 aerospace companies generated more than $15.5 billion in sales in 2015.
The DART Aerospace EC130 Heli-Utility-Basket has been the only external cargo expansion option of its type since arriving on the market in 2010. When Air Zermatt, world-renowned alpine search and rescue operator and longtime DART customer acquired a H130 (EC130T2), they purchased the DART basket. CEO and pilot with Air Zermatt Gerold Biner described this product as “an indispensable tool for our versatile operation”. Since the initial certification flight tests for the basket were conducted on an EC130B4, Air Zermatt quickly found that their H130 was capable of more with the basket installed.
L-3 Communications has announced that its WESCAM division has launched its smallest and lightest electro-optical/infrared (EO/IR) airborne imaging system, the MX-8.
When it is deployed in early 2018 to the Transport Canada training centre in Ottawa, the new flight simulator for the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG) Bell 412 EPI and Bell 429 helicopters may be the most technologically advanced non-military rotary-wing training system in the world.
Canadian UAVs, an unmanned aviation solutions provider for enterprise and military applications, received an approval issued by Transport Canada to inspect remote oil and gas assets beyond line of sight for environmental integrity in civilian airspace.
Cathy Press, through her company, Chinook Helicopters, has been a major player in Canada and abroad, providing training to the rotary-wing market. I last spoke with her at the B.C. Aviation Council Silver Wing Awards gala in October 2017, where she was the recipient of the Back and Bevington Air Safety Trophy, awarded annually for the “most significant contribution to Air Safety in the province of British Columbia.”
As the extractive industries ramp up and enthusiasm spreads in our industry, the ever-pervasive fear that, once again, every operator will suddenly feel “expansive” is becoming more acute.
2017 was a record year for wildfires in British Columbia, which is nothing to cheer about. The raw numbers are staggering in and of themselves: 1,200,000 hectares burned, and tens of thousands of people evacuated from communities across central B.C.
I woke up on January 23 to news of a major earthquake overnight near Alaska, which set off tsunami warnings from the Aleutians to Baja and sent residents of coastal towns scurrying for high ground.
It was a record year for wildfires in British Columbia in 2017 and many operators, which was good news for helicopter operators in the province engaged in aerial firefighting.
Erickson Incorporated, builder and primary operator of the unique Sikorsky S-64 Aircrane heavy lift helicopter, successfully emerged from Chapter 11 in late April 2017 after filing for bankruptcy protection from creditors in November 2016.
Events of the last couple of years – Fort McMurray in 2016 and British Columbia’s 2017 season of disaster – are a hint from Mother Nature that we need to rethink our relationship with forests, especially the part about what happens when things catch on fire.
In June of this year, Danny Sitnam, president and CEO of Helijet International Inc., was inducted into Canada’s Aviation Hall of Fame at the CAHF’s 44th annual Gala Dinner. The event was held on the departures level concourse at Vancouver International Airport (YVR).
When I caught up with Stephen Dengler in early August, he was a bit frosted. “The weather has been against us the whole way,” he commented. They were stuck in Nome, Alaska for a couple of days, and he had “no idea” when he, his father, and former Bell Helicopter test pilot Rob ‘Dugal’ MacDuff would complete their world circumnavigation in a Bell 429 GlobalRanger.
Once known as Canadian Holding Company, shortened to CHC, the once $800-million leader in offshore helicopter operations was devastated by the steep decline in oil prices and a pair of fatal accidents. CHC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April 2016.
Rain has finally arrived on B.C.’s south coast – and maybe, just maybe, there will be an end to the 2017 fire season. It’s been a record year for wildfires in B.C. and as we passed through the Labour Day weekend, the nominal finish line, there was no end in sight.
The aviation world, as it were, descended on Ottawa for the CANSEC Defence and Security Trade Show May 31-June 2, which is hosted by the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI).
Canada is blessed with myriad aerospace companies leading the charge in a variety of capacities, yet some seem to operate under the radar, despite the fact they work on influential aircraft making their mark across the globe.
One of the things I love most about my role as editor of Helicopters magazine is getting out in the field and soaking up the atmosphere of a particular operator or manufacturing facility making a strong contribution to Canadian aviation and aerospace.
Call me crazy, but it’s almost comforting that the price of copper is near what it was when I graduated from high school. I say comforting for two reasons. One, it makes me think of when I had hair – sort of. Two, it means it can’t possibly go lower, can it?
The 2015 Aerospace, Defence and Security EXPO in mid-August offered an intense two-day program of events leading into this year’s Abbotsford International Air Show. Though the two events are not directly linked, ADSE showcases the brain trust for British Columbia’s growing aerospace sector while the air show provides the eye candy.  
Having recently returned from the U.K., I was struck by a number of interesting observations – the Guinness tastes better, there are video cameras EVERYWHERE and there is a pervasive presence of “safety” equipment. Safety vests are worn by virtually every worker on a job site, by bicyclists and motorcyclists alike and many workplaces have visible elements of safety promotion. Now, I can’t say for certain that the U.K. is a safer place to work than Canada, but it is striking for sure.
CAE has announced that it has won defence contracts valued at more than C$150 million to provide simulation products as well as training services for global military customers.
May 7, 2015, CFB Trenton, Ont. - More than 70 personnel from 424 (Transport and Rescue) Squadron with their CC-130H Hercules aircraft and CH-146 Griffon helicopters, supported by more than 100 civilian search and rescue (SAR) partners, are conducting a SAR exercise called TIGEREX 2015 in the Barrie/Orillia, Ont. area from May 4 to 7, 2015.
In military operations and training, standardization, consistency, and commonality are highly desirable. The more consistently routine tasks can be repeated, the better able warriors are to then manage complexity as well as recognize and respond to abnormal situations.
You may have seen the story that has been circulating media channels regarding how little money the federal government has been allocating our military to meet the obligations we put on them at home and abroad.
April 24, 2015, London, U.K. - With an expected market share of more than 33% in 2025, the Asia Pacific region is set to become the largest military helicopters market, growing at a CAGR of 3.1% over the next decade.
April 21, 2015, Marignane, France - Airbus Helicopters and its partner Heli Invest Services welcome the decision of the Polish Ministry of Defence to pre-select the H225M Caracal from Airbus Helicopters.


Precision Aviation Group has announced the signing of a dealership agreement with Honeywell Aerospace which allows PAG to sell, exchange and provide MRO services on Honeywell avionics products including Aspire (satcom) and SkyConnect.
AAR has announced its OEM Aftermarket Solutions group has signed an exclusive agreement with the Power and Data Systems (PDS) Business of AMETEK Aerospace & Defense to be its exclusive worldwide military aftermarket distributor supporting military helicopter, transport, fighter and special missions aircraft.
As part of Helicopters’ special Canadian Innovation in Rotary MRO week, we’ve created this special video highlighting how three Canadian companies are leading the way in keeping the blades turning. Content is sponsored by Vector Aerospace, an industry-leading provider of maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services for fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft operators around the globe.
Technological changes and innovative enhancements have changed the MRO playing field and aviation software provider Rusada Technologies has provided a checklist of how MRO organizations can better equip themselves for sustainable future – and increase value to their organization.
Heli-One now offers dedicated Engine Accessory services for Pratt & Whitney’s PT6C-67C and PT6T engines and General Electric’s CT58/T58 engines. Heli-One can perform these services at Heli-One Canada’s new Engines & Components facility in Delta, B.C. Technicians with extensive engine maintenance experience, along with a wealth of supporting resources, allows the dedicated Engine Accessory workshop to provide customers with high-quality services and low turnaround times.
Vector Aerospace has announced it has received approval from the European and United States air worthiness authorities for its ADS-B solution for Part 27 and Part 29 rotorcraft.
AAR has won an endorsement from Pratt & Whitney to enhance the U.S. Army contract to upgrade and overhaul Auxiliary Power Units (APUs) for its UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters. The new certification augments work being performed at AAR’s Aircraft Component Services facility in Garden City on Long Island as part of a five-year contract, which began in 2014.
April 7, 2015, Delta, B.C. - Customers flying commercial and governmental helicopters in the Republic of Korea now have access to extensive maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) service capabilities from Heli-One’s operations in Canada.
March 25, 2015, Langley, B.C. - Vector Aerospace has announced that it has been selected to perform a 7,500 hour major inspection (G check) and 12-year inspection on one of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s three AS332L1 Super Puma helicopters.
March 16, 2015, Richmond, B.C. - Vector Aerospace Corporation has announced that Vector Aerospace Helicopter Services – North America (HS-NA) has been awarded a 2015 Total Quality Award from Rolls-Royce for the M250 engine product line on Monday, March 2 at the Rolls-Royce FIRST Network Recognition Reception, held as part of Rolls-Royce's attendance at this year's HAI HELI-EXPO in Orlando, Florida.
March 5, 2015, Richmond, B.C. - Vector Aerospace has announced that Vector Aerospace Helicopter Services – North America has been selected by Miami Dade County to provide dynamic component MRO support for the Miami Dade Police Air Support Unit for their fleet of Airbus Helicopters AS350B3 aircraft.
March 4, 2015, Orlando, Fla. - Vector Aerospace Corporation has announced Vector Aerospace Helicopter Services – North America has signed an accordance to provide Rolls-Royce M250 engine overhaul support to Helisul Taxi Aereo Ltd.
Minister of Transport Marc Garneau will soon be deciding whether the draft flight and duty time regulations that were published in Canada Gazette, Part I on July 1, 2017, should be brought into law this summer, and how much they should be modified in response to comments from industry stakeholders.  
I recently started down a path that I first heard about in 2006, when I saw Professor Sidney Dekker speak at the Transport Canada Aviation Safety Seminar in Halifax. These seminars were a tremendous contribution to the Canadian industry and, for the life of me, I never quite understood why TC stopped hosting them.
Ss a newcomer to this industry, I must say I was amazed by Colin Pelton’s story of fighting B.C. and Alberta wildfires, as told by Paul Dixon on page 14. The long hours, the dangerous conditions, the lack of communication, the unpredictable demands, the skill and expertise required, the stress of seeing people and property threatened – I had no idea that flying helicopters could be such a heroic activity.
Abraham Lincoln once said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four hours sharpening my axe.”
The second annual All Canada Aeromedical Transport Safety conference took place Nov. 21 to 23 at the Ornge headquarters in Mississauga, Ont. The event entertained 56 attendees from 21 organizations – a nice uptick from the 37 attendees last year.
Why do some movies end happily, with the appropriate music playing as the credits roll, because only the pilot died? There are so many to choose from where the pilot is introduced, often becoming more than a peripheral character, yet departs early and often gruesomely.
Am I fit to fly? There has been a considerable volume of debate over the past five years or so about Transport Canada’s move towards harmonizing the Canadian regulatory framework with the rest of the world. But what does all this mean to those of us “at the coal face”? What can I and what must I do to stay safe?
Finding solutions to growing the pilot shortage in Canada is one of the most pressing issues facing the Canadian aviation industry – and it’s a challenge that affects all segments, from large commercial operations to northern operators, the military and rotary-wing operators from coast to coast.
For almost seven years, the Helicopter Association of Canada (HAC) and others industry associations have been consulting on the content of Transport Canada’s (TC’s) draft for new fatigue management regulations. And with the exception of input provided by the National Airline Association of Canada (NACC), the proposals and input made by HAC and the various associations have been largely ignored.
There are many key components of a fully functional Safety Management System (SMS), both for the individual players in the system and its institutional masters.
One of the themes of this issue is innovation, and for some time I struggled to start, since the rate of advancement in aviation is breathtaking and we risk being replaced by robots in the not too distant future. Then it occurred to me, that innovation isn’t about just technology, or methods, or brilliant marketing schemes – it also applies to policy and to the direction an industry may move.
This issue let’s talk about our maintenance brethren. Often unappreciated, the fact remains that without our AMEs, we would have nothing to fly and no work. So, let’s address the safety side of maintenance in our daily helicopter operations.

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