By: Nicole Alfano
Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. recently concluded its S-76D helicopter domestic and international demonstration and exhibition tour.
The aircraft, an S-76D helicopter configured for oil and gas operations, began its domestic demonstrations earlier this year in the Gulf of Mexico region.
The S-76D helicopter departs Sikorsky-Coatesville for the demonstration tour in January 2015
The aircraft first visited Lafayette, Louisiana, where a high-speed vinyl applique made for airplanes (rated to 500+ mph) was applied. The design, featuring personnel supporting the offshore Oil & Gas industry, was displayed on the aircraft for the entire tour.
The helicopter received a special applique featuring personnel supporting the offshore Oil & Gas industry for the tour
Sikorsky sales team members and pilots conducted 10 demonstrations with customers before heading to Houston, Texas, for a media and demonstration day on January 23. Following its Houston visit, the aircraft was displayed at a Sikorsky conference in Florida. It was then loaded to onto an Antonov with the final destination of Southeast Asia, the international leg of the demonstration and exhibition tour announced by Sikorsky at the 2015 Helicopter Association International Heli-Expo show in Orlando, Florida.
Sikorsky’s demonstration aircraft is loaded onto an Antonov for transport to Southeast Asia
During the two-month international demonstration and exhibition, the aircraft, flight crew and sales teams visited three countries (Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand), flew multiple sorties, demonstrated the aircraft to more than 100 different customers and flew approximately 300 pilots, crew, decision makers and influencers. Sikorsky pilots, crew and sales members provided in-flight demonstrations, product presentations, and aircraft walk-arounds. Sikorsky employees also participated in goodwill events.
The S-76D in the hangar awaiting the first flight of the day for demonstration in Malaysia
Sikorsky pilots, crew and sales members discuss the capabilities of the S-76D helicopter prior to providing demonstration flights in Thailand
Sikorsky team members participate in an outreach event in Thailand
“The S-76D aircraft had already received great reviews from the customers who have put it into service,” said Leon Silva, Director, S-76 Programs, Sikorsky’s Commercial Systems and Services. “This exposition gave the S-76D more customer visibility and allowed them to see how beneficial it can be to their business. We were thrilled to provide customers with the opportunity to experience the S-76D helicopter’s smooth ride and quiet cabin operate its state-of-the-art cockpit technology and utilize the aircraft’s features designed for safety, power and reliability.”
Key features of the S-76D include enlarged 19” X 26” cabin windows and energy attenuating seats for all occupants.
“This tour was a wonderful opportunity to showcase an exceptional helicopter built by a hard-working Sikorsky team,” Silva added.
Sikorsky has delivered more than 800 S-76® helicopters to customers globally since 1979, contributing daily to a growing 6.7-million-plus fleet flight hours total.
The new generation S-76D helicopter, through its application of modern technologies, is designed to provide a substantial increase in performance, power and value. 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.
The six-month demonstration tour was “a wonderful opportunity to showcase an exceptional helicopter built by a hard-working Sikorsky team,” said Leon Silva, Director S-76 Programs