Sikorsky delivers first SAR configured S-76D
July 14, 2014, Farnborough, U.K. - Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. has announced the delivery of the first S-76D aircraft equipped for search-and-rescue (SAR) services. The aircraft was delivered to Mitsubishi Corporation for use by the Japan Coast Guard. The announcement was made at the 2014 Farnborough Air Show in Farnborough, United Kingdom.
By Carey Fredericks
To date, Mitsubishi Corporation has contracted for 11 S-76D helicopters for use by the Japan Coast Guard, which has a record of flying S-76 aircraft in the SAR configuration and continues to build on its history. Specifically, the Japan Coast Guard has flown the S-76C, S-76C+ and S-76C++ models.
Among other essential equipment crucial to the SAR mission, the Japan Coast Guard aircraft will feature a fully coupled, four-axis autopilot to reduce pilot workload and enhance overall mission safety.
“We are excited to deliver our first S-76D helicopter outfitted for SAR operations to a loyal customer who has experienced the success of the S-76 family,” said Dan Hunter, director, Platforms, Sikorsky Commercial Systems & Services. “Japan is an important market with many potential customers for all S-76D mission segments, and we are thrilled to have more of our aircraft operate in the region.”
Sikorsky delivered the first S-76D aircraft to Bristow Group, Inc. for offshore oil worker transport in December 2013. Today, Sikorsky also announced that it has begun delivering S-76D aircraft equipped for VIP/Executive Transportation. By the end of this year, the company expects to deliver S-76D helicopters equipped for the Emergency Medical Services; the fourth and final mission segment for the S-76D helicopter.
Sikorsky has delivered more than 800 S-76 helicopters to customers globally since 1979, contributing daily to a growing 6.5-million-plus fleet flight hours total.
The new generation S-76D helicopter, through its application of modern technologies, provides a substantial increase in performance, power and authority. The S-76D helicopter’s baseline equipment includes powerful and efficient Pratt & Whitney Canada PW210S engines; an advanced THALES TopDeck integrated avionics system and four-axis autopilot; Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) incorporated into fleet monitoring and analysis; active vibration control; and all-composite, flaw-tolerant main rotor blades. A Rotor Ice Protection System (RIPS) for all-weather capability will be available as an option.