SERVING MANY INDUSTRIES—SAVING MORE THAN TIME www.nehc.org
A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT Dear NEHC Members, Thank you for your continued support of the NEHC. We are very pleased to announce there has been a new world record set for circumnavigating the globe in a helicopter as of August 2008. The flight was completed in eleven days, seven hours and two minutes covering 21,000 nautical miles. I don’t know about you, but that’s farther than I’ve ever flown! For more information please see this newsletter’s article “Grand Adventure” on page two. In regard to the Boston Heliport, as some of you may have heard, Mayor Thomas M. Menino backed off from the push to build a heliport on the South Boston Waterfront after state Senator Jack Hart announced he would join Councilor at Large Michael Flaherty publicly opposing the plan. While he does not support the South Boston Waterfront location, Menino still believes an additional heliport is necessary for medical flights and private transportation, but would not overcome well organized political opposition that whipped up the South Boston neighborhood. City officials are pursuing increased access for helicopters at Logan, including a potential new helipad or refueling stop. The NEHC is committed to reestablishing a downtown public heliport. We understand its significance to the helicopter community and are in the process of scheduling a meeting with Senator Hart and Mayor Menino to try to advance our cause. We will keep you informed of any progress. Bell Helicopter, one of our Industry Members, would like to have a roundtable discussion with NEHC members regarding the heliport in order to gain important insight into the project. Tom Grassia is planning to attend, and Bell Helicopter is hoping some of the New York City Heliport Operators, HAI and other groups and individuals who have successfully overcome public issues associated with heliports will be there as well. Greg Harville has rejoined the NEHC Board and is back in New Hampshire flying plenty of local flights. With fall’s amazing colors, he says the view out his window surely beats Kuwait. We’re glad to have him back. Please see Greg’s article “Are You Ready to GO?” on page 6. We hope to see you all at the Fall Membership Meeting on Monday, November 17th, at the Tewksbury Country Club in Tewksbury, MA. This terrific venue is owned by Marc Ginsburg, a recent addition to our NEHC membership. Kevin L. Bredenbeck, Chief Test Pilot for Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation will be making this meeting’s presentation. Bredenbeck piloted Sikorsky’s X2 TECHNOLOGY Demonstrator in August 2008 and his presentation will cover the flight as well as features of the X2 TECHNOLOGY Demonstrator. It is a pleasure to have knowledgeable presenters who serve as pioneers within the helicopter industry. I’m sure you enjoy hearing of advances and innovations within our industry as much as I do, and Kevin is sure to have some fascinating experiences to share. It should be a wonderful evening.
Paul M. Montrone President
Grand Adventure Fierce headwinds, sleep deprivation and wrangles with Russian authorities. When Scott Kasprowicz and Steve Sheik landed back in New York they had experienced it all during an epic journey which re-wrote the record books.
Entrepreneur Scott Kasprowicz was founder and CEO of communications services company Texel, which he built from a tiny home office operation into a national business with 500 employees. A pilot for more than 30 years with a lifelong passion for aviation, he was most recently deputy secretary of transportation for Virginia.
Director of flight operations and co-pilot Steve Sheik began his aviation career in 1992 and has flown in several regions of the US, including Alaska. He holds an airline transport pilot license and is a certified flight instructor.
The aircraft—Kasprowicz and Sheik achieved their record breaking feat in a factory standard AgustaWestland Grand. The aircraft had no customized auxiliary fuel storage and carried no extra fuel. The Grand operated below its certified gross weight and its 213-gallon fuel capacity was unmodified.
The route — Departing at 3:14 AM on August 7 the crew’s flight plan took them east. Crossing the North Atlantic via stops in Greenland and Iceland, they touched down in Redhill, England just 40 hours and 41 minutes later, shattering the previous transatlantic mark by 35 hours and covering 3,449 nm. Next up was western and central Europe followed by the vast expanse of Russia – the most challenging sector of the entire journey. The crew re-entered North America by crossing the Bering Sea and into Alaska.
The previous record—The previous record stood since 1996 when Ron Bower and co-pilot John Williams flew a Bell 430 around the globe in 17 days, six hours, 14 minutes and 25 seconds, completing 20,508 nm. 2
As records go, it will take some beating! Adventurer Scott Kasprowicz and his co-pilot Steve Sheik set a magnificent new world record for circling the globe in a helicopter when their AgustaWestland Grand touched down at La Guardia airport in New York on August 18. It marked the end of an extraordinary round-the-world odyssey which saw the duo complete almost 21,000 nautical miles in an eye-watering 11 days, seven hours and two minutes. Scott tells the story of the remarkable feat in his own words:
The Homecoming: There were so many emotions swirling around. We were relieved that it was over but also really excited because there was a fantastic turnout at La Guardia. The motivation for us was the pure challenge. Could we really beat the record? I slept for 14 hours solid afterwards and I’d never needed sleep so badly!
The Toughest Challenge: We spent up to 20 hours a day flying. You can imagine how tough that is on the body. We knew that the Russian leg of the journey would be the biggest challenge. There is a very rigid air traffic control system which is pretty inflexible. Our flight also required diplomatic approvals. It’s a vast country – we crossed nine time zones. In the end we lost about a day and we decided to try to make that up on the US leg, which meant even more flying time.
The Ground Crew: I can’t say enough about the incredible job Harlan Hamlin did as the man running our command center. He was a volunteer, worked 20-plus hours a day and did absolutely everything to make sure nothing slowed us down. His knowledge and perseverance were amazing. It’s an unseen part of the operation, but it made the difference between success and failure. Donna Hickman, who provided administrative support and Natalia Nizker, who coordinated our Russian operations, did a fantastic job, too.
AgustaWestland Support: The AgustaWestland team was phenomenal. Throughout the mission anything they could do to improve performance, they did it. There was even a tech rep waiting for us in Kazan, Russia to replace a vibration damper. Because of that we only lost 30 minutes. Then in Alaska one of the reps flew on to Michigan so that he was on hand to preflight the aircraft and we could catch a little extra sleep. Everyone we met went above and beyond the call of duty.
The aircraft: We both found that the aircraft performed beyond our expectations. The performance was always just a little bit ahead of where we thought it would be. We monitored the Grand’s performance meticulously and those small differences really added up and helped us.
Lighter moments: Ron Bower, who set the record in 1996, is a great guy. He contacted us to wish us all the best and even went into the command center and worked there for a day. What a gentleman! He also joined us in the aircraft for one of the US legs of the journey. That was amazing to get such support from the guy whose record we were trying to beat.
THE APPROXIMATE DISTANCE COVERED IN NAUTICAL MILES
AVERAGE SPEED IN KNOTS FOR THE ENTIRE 11 DAYS
AVERAGE SPEED IN KNOTS WHILE AIRBORNE
For more detailed information about this record setting flight visit:
www.grandadventure08.com Source material, "RotaryWing, the AgustaWestland group internal magazine." Reprinted by permission AgustaWestland. 3
Citizen Soldiers—Flying with the MA Army National Guard The Massachusetts Army National Guard’s 3rd Battalion, 126th Aviation Regiment (AR), call-sign “Bo-Sox”, operates a fleet of seven UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters based out of Otis AFB located on Cape Cod, MA. The 126th AR consists of about 30 pilots and their crew-chiefs as well as 60-80 maintenance and support personnel that keep the helicopters flying on a regular basis. The Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk is a medium-lift utility or assault helicopter designed to replace the UH-1 Iroquois. Several versions of the Black Hawk are flown throughout the various services including the Coast Guard’s “Jay Hawk” (also based out of Otis AFB), the Navy’s “Sea Hawk”, the Air Force’s “Pave-Hawk” and the Marines “Marine-One”, which provides transportation for the President of The United States. The “Bo-Sox” Black Hawk squadron serves a multi-faceted mission including troop movement, General Aviation Support (GSAP), VIP transport, search and rescue and MedEvac. In 2006, the 126th AR spent a year in Kuwait transporting senior level Generals throughout the country to various command posts and operating bases. The helicopters were transported to Kuwait on a large Navy cargo ship. When it was time to for the crew to come home, the helicopters stayed in Kuwait for the next unit. The current helicopters flown by the 126th are from the Washington State Air National Guard. During training flights, pilots routinely fly from Cape Cod to Maine and Vermont in order to practice mountain-terrain flying. Training missions also include trips to New York and New Jersey for night-vision training with night-vision goggles. Frequent flights in and around Boston provide the pilots with necessary instruments training prior to shipping out on an overseas mission. On the day I visited the squadron, I was given a full-tour of the two large hangars which serve as the maintenance and operations hangars for the 126th. I was also given a tour of flight-operations where the squadron was being prepped for an air-assault training exercise with National Guard soldiers who would be repelling out of the helicopters at a nearby landing field. When the exercise began, two helicopters departed the tarmac and flew to the field, loading on soldiers and lifting them off, only to have the soldiers then rappel out of the helicopters in groups of three or four. It was an amazing display of flying ability, not to mention the courage of the soldiers. When not flying for the 126th AR, many of the pilots have full-time civilian helicopter jobs including flying for the local Med-Flight company and flying corporate helicopters. All Army pilots receive their flight training at Fort Rucker, located in Fort Rucker, Alabama and the Home of Army Aviation. Many thanks to Sergeant First Class Robert D. Fitzgerald for coordinating my tour. 4
Contributed by: Christian Valle
NEHC Fall Membership Meeting Heavy hors d’oeuvres and non-alcoholic beverages will be served. Cash bar. Free admission for members and $10 fee for non members, which will be waived if you join the NEHC the night of the meeting
Monday November 17, 2008 7:00 PM at the Tewksbury Country Club 1880 Main Street Tewksbury, MA 01876 (978) 640-0033
Any members interested in flying into this meeting should contact Marc Ginsburg at the Tewksbury Country Club at (978) 640-0033 or email@example.com to make arrangements. Happy flying!
Sikorsky X2 TECHNOLOGY™
Special Guest: Kevin L. Bredenbeck Chief Test Pilot Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation Bredenbeck piloted Sikorsky’s X2 TECHNOLOGY Demonstrator for approximately thirty minutes in August 2008. The X2 TECHNOLOGY Demonstrator was created by Sikorsky to advance design of counter-rotating coaxial-rotor helicopters. The design is also intended to establish that a helicopter can maintain 250 knots comfortably while retaining key attributes that make helicopters so desirable, such as excellent low speed handling, efficient hovering and safe autorotation, as well as be capable of a simple transition from hover to high speed.
In addition to Kevin L. Bredenbeck’s presentation, the NEHC board would like to speak with the Membership and review the progress of the Boston Heliport; we look forward to your participation in this integral discussion. NEHC Industry Members will be invited to speak about their latest technology as well. We are looking forward to hearing about their contributions and other potential technological advances within the field. 5
Airspace Refresher Quiz Please consider the list of operational and equipment criteria listed below. Match these requirements with each class of airspace. The requirements apply to multiple types of airspace, so consider what rules apply to each airspace class and select all applicable requirements for each airspace class. Note: References can be found in FAR Part 91 and the Aeronautical Information Manual.
1. Class A
3. Class C
5. Class E
2. Class B
4. Class D
6. Class G
OPERATIONAL AND EQUIPMENT CRITERIA LIST A. A helicopter may be operated clear of clouds if operated at a speed that allows the pilot adequate opportunity to see any air traffic or obstruction in time to avoid a collision B. Avoid the flow of fixed-wing aircraft, if operating a helicopter C. Circle the airport to the left, if operating an airplane D. Clearance prior to entering the airspace E. Cloud clearance requirement for VFR operations is “500’ below clouds, 1,000’ above clouds, 2,000’ horizontal from clouds" F. Cloud clearance requirement for VFR operations is "clear of clouds" G. Cloud clearance requirement for VFR operations greater than 10,000 MSL is “1,000’ below clouds, 1,000’ above clouds, 1 statute mile horizontal from clouds" H. Cloud clearance requirement for VFR operations less than 10,000 MSL is “500’ below clouds, 1,000’ above clouds, 2,000’ horizontal from clouds" I. Each pilot must comply with any departure procedures established for that airport by the FAA J. Each pilot operating an airplane approaching to land on a runway served by a visual approach slope indicator must maintain an altitude at or above the glide path until a lower altitude is necessary for a safe landing K. Equipped with 2-way radio capable of communicating with ATC L. Establish 2-way radio communications M. Flight visibility requirement for VFR operations is” 3 statute miles” N. Flight visibility requirement for VFR operations greater than 10,000 MSL is “5 statute miles” O. Flight visibility requirement for VFR operations less than 10,000 MSL is “3 statute miles” P. Instrument rating Q. Maximum Speed 200 KIAS R. Maximum Speed 250 KIAS S. Squawk Mode C T. Transponder equipped U. Unless required by the applicable distance-from-cloud criteria, each pilot operating a large or turbine-powered airplane must enter the traffic pattern at an altitude of at least 1,500 feet above the elevation of the airport and maintain at least 1,500 feet until further descent is required for a safe landing
Answers will be posted on NEHC Website on December 1, 2008. Please visit www.nehc.org 6
Helicopter Puzzles Mystery Heliport Do you know where this heliport is located? The first person to correctly identify this heliport will win a coveted NEHC ball cap, as well as important bragging rights. Please tell us how you recognized it and why you like landing here. Answers can be submitted on line at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop us a note addressed to: New England Helicopter Council 5 Commonwealth Road Natick, MA 01760
While ferrying workers back and forth from an offshore oil rig, the helicopter lost power and went down. Fortunately, it landed safely in a lake. Struggling to get out, one man tore off his seat belt, jerked open the exit door, and inflated his life vest. “Don’t jump!” the pilot yelled. “This thing is supposed to float!” As the man leapt from the helicopter into the lake, he yelled back, “Yeah, and it’s supposed to FLY, too!”
H-E-L-I-C-O-P-T-R Sudoku I E
Fill the grid so that every row, every column, and every 3 x 3 box contains the letters
Fill the grid so that every row, every column, and every 2 x 3 box contains the letters T
Are you Ready to GO? I was speaking to a colleague about the importance of a culture of safety and how managers and employees at all levels use safe operating practices. “Do as I say – not as I do” is not an appropriate manager’s safety philosophy; my colleague agreed but made the additional observation “don’t abuse safety. It’s easy to claim a situation is unsafe when the real problem is poor preparation”. I have participated in many safety and accident prevention courses and actively use safety tools to mitigate risk, and have discovered “don’t confuse safety with poor preparation” is applicable to life in general, not just flying. While assigned to the 197th Infantry Brigade, I spent a lot of time away from home station supporting the Army’s Infantry Center trainings around the country. During the summer of 1981, we deployed to Fort Irwin, the Army’s desert warfare training center in High Mojave Desert. While at Fort Irwin, I was tasked to fly a UH-1H Huey helicopter to Fresno to pick up a part for an aircraft scheduled for a mission the next morning. We received the request late in the day and would be returning around midnight. To get out of Bicycle Lake Army Airfield, we had to fly south in a corridor down to Interstate 15, and from there were permitted to navigate on course. To get from the Mojave Desert into the San Joaquin Valley we flew through Tehachapi Pass, because this route is too far for a Huey on a single fuel load, we planned to stop at Bakersfield on our way to Fresno and on our return to Fort IrDaylight image of Bicycle Lake Army Airfield looking northward. Fort Irwin is in the lower left corner win. of the picture and Tiefort Mountain is to the right of the airport. Image from Microsoft Virtual Earth™
We picked up the part in Fresno, made our final fuel stop and headed back. We flew parallel to Interstate 15 until we identified the return corridor and started our final leg into the desert. Once we entered the corridor we had to rely on our ability to fly a precise heading and airspeed. In the Mojave, dust and sand is blown up hill into the mountains all day, and at night the sand is blown downhill into the desert resulting in dust suspended in the atmosphere several thousand feet above ground level. This night, the dust and sand went up to about 5,000 feet. The dust was not thick, but reduced visibility to about 5 miles. There was no visible horizon and it was too dark to see the ground. The weather forecast was good, we had plenty of fuel, the crew was instrument proficient and we’d only need to dead reckon long enough to spot the white-white-green flashes of the military airport beacon. Tiefort Mountain starts at the eastern edge of the airport boundary and climbs to 1,500 feet above airport field elevation; our plan was to maintain cruise altitude until we were over the airport. We arrived and setup a right hand orbit descending slowly toward airport field elevation. After three or four circles we began pickup up reasonable ground contact and made preparation for our approach and landing. We were based on the south side, just west of Tiefort Mountain and at the northern base of another set of hills that extended up to about 500 feet above the airport’s elevation making the preferred landing direction to the south or southeast. We essentially had one way in and one way out. As we descended below 50 feet the crew chief advised us we were generating a dust cloud and it looked like it was overtaking the helicopter. At about 20 feet AGL the dust cloud caught us and we executed a missed approach, a fairly common maneuver in that environment. We had a strong tail wind landing but thought if we kept our speed a little higher on final approach we could get in ground effect and land before being overtaken by the dust cloud. We setup for another approach, but could not get far enough ahead of the dust cloud to make a safe landing. Fuel was getting low; we needed a plan to land the aircraft, which is where the preparation piece came into play. I was taught the importance of multiple ways to find and land at tactical landing zones, to study key terrain features and to (Continued on page 9)
(Continued from page 8)
practicing approaches from various directions. It was clear we were not going to get back to our LZ using our conventional technique so I briefed the crew on a tactical approach I had discovered. During daylight hours this flight path was impractical because it resulted in a steep downwind approach, but now offered the possibility of landing with a nice headwind thus avoiding brownout conditions. We located the start point of the tactical arrival that I’d practiced. There was no need to fly nap-of-the earth so we chose an altitude and airspeed allowing us to see the terrain. This time the dust cloud stayed behind the aircraft until we got the skids on the ground and dissipated quickly as we reduced collective pitch. The crew was well prepared so the end of the story is not dramatic. We regularly flew at night and practiced flight in instrument meteorological conditions. The now familiar concept of Cockpit Resource Management (CRM) was not yet part of an Army Aviator’s formal training but we were taught to brief maneuvers, include the whole crew and to take predetermined action if the aircraft was outside established parameters, such as making a go-around when enveloped in a dust cloud. Proper preparation is essential to success and more difficult tasks require more detailed preparation. There are plenty of resources on developing personal minimums and how they are affected by training, experience, proficiency and physical conditions. Similar factors affect our aircraft and the operating environment. Combined, these factors establish individual go/nogo criteria. Before you decide to GO make sure that you are prepared to deal with ALL foreseeable challenges. If you’re not prepared you can quickly become overwhelmed when faced with an unforeseen problem. If you want to GO more often, you may need more training or different equipment as part of the preparation process. Remember, additional training and better equipment only helps you GO if you regularly practice the skills and frequently operate the equipment. Contributed by: Greg Harville
Short Hops Short Hops is a collection of short stories originally published in flying magazines and periodicals pertaining to personal aviation experiences. Short Hops combines these pieces in chronological order starting with the childhood desire to become a flyer and goes on to chronicle the life of a flyer who earns his Air Force wings, transitions into Army Aviation and receives the Master Army Aviator's badge and the highest civilian Air Transport ratings. Author David Arthur Jarratt was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the US Air Force. During his tenure, he served as a helicopter pilot, co-piloted a twin-engine amphibian and supported the Mercury Space Program. Jarratt retired from the Army as a Lt. Colonel and Master Army Aviator and began writing short stories based on his flying experiences. Jarratt has been a long time member of the NEHC and we encourage any interested members to check out Short Hops at http://www2.xlibris.com. 9
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Natick, MA 01760 5 Commonwealth Road THE NEHC ORGANIZATION NEHC Officers
NEHC Board of Directors
Affiliate Member/ Director Designees
President Paul Montrone
Darryl Abbey, Chairman
Boston MedFlight Suzanne Wedel
Treasurer Steve Shapiro Secretary Tom Rea
Chris Harrington Greg Harville Bob Jesurum Joe Miara Paul Montrone Doug Sherman Rob Smith Christian Valle
Industry Member/ Director Designees AgustaWestland Chris Sirkis
Friends of Flying Santa Brain Tague
American Eurocopter Scott Dodge
Bell Helicopter Textron Jeanette Eaton
Conklin & deDecker Life Flight of Maine New York State Police Survival Systems Inc.
MD Helicopters Bob Caldwell Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. Vaughan Askue
NEHC Operating Members Aerial Boston Photographers Massachusetts State Police Air Wing Aerial Productions, LLC NationAir Aviation Insurance Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. New Hampshire Helicopters Cannon Aviation Group Inc. Sabrina Fisheries Granite State Aviation LLC Thermo Fisher Scientific JBI Helicopter Services United Technologies
New England Helicopter Council newsletter