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Articles for category Opinion-Editorial




Nov
11
2018

Mentor Tips Worth Heeding

Posted by jhadmin

I was a full-time municipal firefighter 20 years ago, while at the same time flying helicopters on my days off. In 1999, I was offered a job as a pilot flying helicopter air ambulance (HAA.) It seemed a perfect fit as I not only had experience treating patients in the streets and setting up HAA landing zones, but I was a local pilot with significant experience. In in the life of an HAA call, there are two major decision points that are singular moments that can change the arc of history. The first moment is when the pilot must decide whether or not to launch. When everything’s normal, (i.e., weather, crew, and maintenance) the decision’s easy; you launch. The second moment happens when en route and some part of the flight begins to degrade. The pilot finds himself at a crossroad: keep going or turn around and head back to base? [Read More...]



Categories: categorySafety categoryOpinion-Editorial



Oct
30
2018

Maintenance Minute - Blue Light Special

Posted by jhadmin

TIP #1 Power of the Pencil You discover your Bell 206 Series battery relay does not come online after an engine start using an external power unit (EPU) due to a low aircraft battery. This relay requires a minimum residual voltage in the battery to actuate the solenoid and pull the contactor bar down. While the aircraft is running and battery switch on, remove the round “label” from the top cover on most battery relays. Insert a wooden pencil in the cover hole and push down on the contactor bar. Reinstall the label or cover the hole with tape. [Read More...]



Tags: Maintenance Minute
Categories: categoryTraining categoryOpinion-Editorial



Oct
29
2018

DIRTY AIR OPS & MX

Posted by jhadmin

When it comes to helicopter operations there is actually no such thing as clean air. “Typically when you are in flight, you are in somewhat clean air, but most often it is not cruise flight that is the problem. Most of your damage occurs during takeoff and landing when you are kicking up the sand, grass, dust, or soot that is on the ground,” says Tony Bohm, director of business development at Aerometals. “Often it is not until an operator has a problem with an engine that they realize that their areas of operation are not as clean as they think they are. We had one operator who was trashing engines because they would cut the lawn every week next to the training area. They were constantly ingesting grass clippings into their engines and causing damage.” [Read More...]

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Tags: Aerometals Donaldson Aerospace and Defense Helicopter Dirty Air Operations Inlet Barrier Filters
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryTraining



Oct
22
2018

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Ian Robinson

Posted by jhadmin

RPMN: In your view, what is the greatest challenge for the helicopter industry at this moment in time? Quality personnel is definitely the biggest challenge for our industry. It is tough to sell this trade to someone who has the mental aptitude to calculate and determine that the total ROI of the career path yields a negative return for those who have to take out a personal loan to obtain training. Flying is only a small portion of career success, and yet, the minimum educational requirements are a high school diploma and 200 hours of stick time. A successful business requires a wildly more advanced and educated population than what is minimally required to enter this profession. [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter Professionals Ian Robinson meet a rotorcraft pro
Categories: categoryHuman Interest categoryOpinion-Editorial



Oct
15
2018

Gain Your Cumulative Advantage

Posted by jhadmin

When it comes to the art of networking, the fact of the matter is that none of us have an inherent advantage over anybody else. Humans do not come from the womb imbued with the “Great Networker” gene. Networking is, in fact, a learned skill that (like all skills) becomes easier and more natural the more it is practiced. By definition, networking is the exchange of information or services between individuals, groups, or institutions. Specifically, networking is the “cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business.” Typically, these connections are created and enhanced through conversation, be it face-to-face, email, phone, or video chat. The importance of becoming an effective networker cannot be overstated during an individual’s military-to-civilian transition. Beginning as early as possible is vital in order to reduce one’s overall level of stress, while increasing the likelihood of a streamlined transition to the civilian workforce. [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter HeliSuccess Helicopter Networking Military to Civilian Helicopter
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial



Oct
09
2018

Executive Watch: Pioneer Woman-Jan Smith, Founder of S3 Inc.

Posted by jhadmin

Like the company she founded, Jan Smith is opportunistic. For example, Smith’s corporation S3 Inc. (AKA “S-cubed”) stands for System Studies and Simulation, but it evolved and grew greatly from a software developer startup that began in Smith’s Alabama house with only three employees (Smith first hired “me, myself, and I”) to a Huntsville-based corporation that follows the money to where it leads and now wholly owns three subsidiaries: Kachemak Bay Flying Services (KBFS), Global Logistics Support Services (GLSS), and S3 International Inc. (S3I). [Read More...]



Tags: aviation and missile systems engineering Global Logistics Support Services (GLSS) Jan Smith Kachemak Bay Flying Services (KBFS) S3 S3 International Inc. (S3I) System Studies and Simulation
Categories: categoryCompany Profiles categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest



Oct
02
2018

Question for helicopter pilots: Why not fly higher?

Posted by jhadmin

Question for helicopter pilots: Why not fly higher? Every few years, I use this platform to push for change. One of my pet peeves and favorite topics to kick around involves the altitudes at which we fly our helicopters. The fiction writer, Tamara Cohen, once wrote: “People don't change. The world carries on spinning inexorably around but people don't spin with it. They dig their heels into the shifting sand and cling on for dear life.” I feel like we as an industry are sometimes incapable of changing our behavior. We continue to do the same things over and over that cause us problems. This really applies to helicopter altitudes. I travel monthly to South Florida to fly an AW109E as a contract helicopter pilot. I stay at the home of a family member. Almost daily, helicopters fly over the house at 500 feet or below. The culprits range from light single-engine training helicopters to medium-twin engine IFR helicopters. Because I am a helicopter pilot, many of the neighbors ask me, “Do they have to fly over us that low?” My answer is always a resounding NO! [Read More...]



Tags: Helicopter altitudes helicopter flying altitudes Helicopter Safety
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categorySafety



Sep
24
2018

Maintaining Balance: Dynamic Balancing in Helicopters

Posted by jhadmin

Helicopters are characterized by a high number of rotating parts. These include the main rotor, the tail rotor, the engines, the transmission shafts, etc. Other rotating and non-rotating parts such as pumps, bearings, dampers, and the landing gear system can also induce vibrations. These are not always easy to identify and correct. Historically there have even been cases of cells that after being put into service had to be discarded because of a tendency to give rise to high frequency vibrations that could not be corrected. Regardless of origins, a high level of vibration is a main obstacle to comfort and therefore also to the commercial placement of a helicopter. Since vibrations are in most cases related to the action of the rotors, the dynamic balancing of rotors and shaft is a very critical helicopter maintenance operation. [Read More...]



Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial



Sep
17
2018

Military2Civilian - Don't be THAT guy

Posted by jhadmin

You’re about to be that guy—that guy that gets his first civilian flying job and can’t stop talking about how he used to do things in the military. Look, we get it; your military flying is the only gauge you have to measure your new civilian flying job. I’m here to tell you—it’s grating to hear the new guy prattle on about how he used to do things in the military. [Read More...]



Tags: Civilian Helicopter Pilots Military Helicopter Pilots Military to Civilian Helicopter Transition Military to Civilian Pilots
Categories: categoryCareer Development categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHelicopter Sectors



Sep
04
2018

Meet A Rotorcraft Pro - Stan Braun, DOM for Haverfield Aviation

Posted by jhadmin

RPMN: What is your current position? I am the director of maintenance for Haverfield Aviation in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Haverfield operates 23 MD-500 D and E models, one Garlick UH-1H, and one Delta Enterprises UH-60 A model Blackhawk. Haverfield Aviation is an innovative operator that utilizes its fleet to service the transmission power grid throughout the United States. Haverfield offers comprehensive visual inspections, demolition and construction, maintenance, OPGW support, aerial tree trimming, helicopter lift services, FLIR, and drone services. [Read More...]



Tags: Haverfield Aviation Haverfield Director of Maintenance Helicopter Professionals meet a rotorcraft pro
Categories: categoryOpinion-Editorial categoryHuman Interest


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