FAA approves type design for PW210S in Sikorsky S-76D
Dec. 13, 2011, Stratford, Conn. - Sikorsky has achieved another significant milestone in its S-76D helicopter program as the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently certified the Pratt & Whitney Canada PW210S engines that will be installed in Sikorsky’s new S-76D helicopter.
By Carey Fredericks
The engine certification issued on Dec. 5 signifies that the PW210S engine meets the requirements of Part 21.29 of the FAA regulations. A Part 21.29 type certificate is required for products manufactured in a foreign country or jurisdiction with which the United States has an agreement for the acceptance for import into the United States.
This latest type certification follows the issuance of a Type Certificate E-36 on the engines by Transport Canada on Oct. 14.
Pratt & Whitney Canada, also a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., has completed more than 10,000 hours of testing of the engine in test cells and flight tests.
“The FAA validation of the engines is yet another important milestone in the development of the S-76D helicopter. With any development program, there are challenges, and the program team has faced every challenge with a robust process of the highest standards to ensure that this engine will be ready to enter service and to meet the needs of our customers,” said Tim Fox, S-76® helicopter Senior Program Manager.
Sikorsky expects to receive European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) validation of the Canadian Type Certificate in the coming months, Fox said. Delivery of the first aircraft to the launch customer is slated for 2012.
Currently, Sikorsky is testing three prototype S-76D helicopters in test flights. Two additional prototypes are expected to join the program in early 2012 as the program drives toward full type certification and additional certifications for cold weather and Rotor Ice Protection System (RIPS) performance.
“It has been a noteworthy year of development on the S-76D helicopter with final assembly operations in our Coatesville, Pennsylvania fully supporting the ‘D’ completions and our West Palm Beach flight test center flying the prototypes to their fullest. We are looking to another important year ahead with the certifications to come and eventually seeing the S-76D helicopter delivered to our customers, and on a larger scale, being introduced to the world,” said Dan Hunter, Director of Commercial Programs for Sikorsky Global Helicopters.
The new generation S-76D helicopter will perform an array of civil missions including executive transport, offshore oil, emergency medical services, and a multi-mission role.
Among the S-76D helicopter’s features are all-composite, flaw-tolerant main rotor blades; an advanced THALES integrated avionics system and autopilot; health and usage monitoring system, active vibration control; powerful Pratt & Whitney Canada PW210S engines as standard equipment; and an optional Rotor Ice Protection System (RIPS) for all-weather capability.