Donaldson, University of Miami partner on unique research program
Donaldson Aerospace & Defense has joined forces with the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science on a one-of-a-kind flying scientific laboratory designed to assist scientists to obtain vital information about climate and human health.
The Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science Helicopter Observation Platform (HOP) is designed to carry environmental sensors and instrument inlets in front of the aircraft at low airspeed and at various altitudes, from a few feet above the Earth’s surface and up through the atmospheric boundary layer and the mid-troposphere.
Donaldson, a leading worldwide provider of air filtration systems for the aerospace and defense industry, has equipped the School’s Airbus Helicopter H125 with a Donaldson Inlet Barrier Filter (IBF) system. The IBF ensures safe and efficient operations by preventing corrosive salt-laden air and other environmental threats from entering the aircraft’s engines.
Dirt, dust, salt and sand ingestion rob a turboshaft engine of its ability to produce the power required for helicopter missions. Since the H125 will study the environment near the ocean and close to the ground, the IBF is critical to the long-term effectiveness of the helicopter. In addition to protecting the helicopter’s engines, the IBF conserves the Rosenstiel School’s budget, which consists largely of federal grants and philanthropic support, by extending maintenance intervals and preventing damage to the helicopter’s valuable engines.
“When we were challenged by circumstance to equip the research platform with a proven air filtration system, Donaldson worked with us and went above and beyond to find a solution that will keep our program and research missions on track,” said Roni Avissar, professor and dean, of the Rosenstiel School. “We are very pleased with Donaldson’s support and thank them – as an environmentally-focused company – for recognizing the importance of this scientific research.”
Avissar, who serves as the program’s chief pilot, added that the research effort is scheduled to get under way in October after certification requirements are completed. Donaldson plans to support the IBF system throughout the program and will work with the University of Miami, Airbus and Cool City Avionics to showcase the helicopter at Heli-Expo 2016, Feb. 29-March 3 in Louisville, Kentucky,