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“In the wake of the wars, the (Iraqi) capability to launch and field helicopters was reduced to ashes,” said U.S. Army Col. Thomas J. Trossen, the former Chief of Army Aviation Division for U.S. Forces – Iraqi, Advising and Training Mission from July 2010 to July 2011. “It seems only fitting that the headquarters of the emerging Iraqi Army aviation force should be located at a place called Pheonix Base in the International Zone.”

CAMP TAJI, Iraq ‚Äì AH-64D Apache Longbow crew chiefs are proud of their aircraft. They're quick to tell you it's one of the most advanced pieces of equipment in the Army's arsenal. 

They boast that the 58 foot-long war-fighting machine travels up to 227 miles per hour and is armed with as many as 16 Hellfire rockets, up to 75 (2.75 inch) aerial rockets, and can carry 1,200 rounds for its 30 mm machine gun.

By Caterina Hessler, Philipp Jahnke - Due to environmental pollution and the dawning end of mineral oil as one of the main energy resources, clean ways to generate renewable energy gain more and more importance. One of the most important renewable energy sources is wind. Therefore giant wind farms are planned to be built in the Northern and Baltic Sea – but as the number and the size of those parks grow, new problems concerning the care for injured or ill workers arise.

By Caterina Hessler - The “Rega” is one of the most famous rescue institutions in Europe. It has influenced alpine rescue in Switzerland and worldwide, like no other. With more than 13,700 alerts in 2010, the crews of the “Rega” fly for people´s lives 24/7.

By Mike Biasatti - How do you build trust among your crew? I’m always impressed when I ask one of the med crew a question that they don’t know the answer to, and instead of trying to BS me with some verbal gymnastics, they answer,  “I don’t know.” Those who are truly interested in building a strong sense of team will go one further and follow with, “I’ll find out and get back to you.”

"After the first couple of speakers, it was clear to me that this seminar was different from other seminars/conferences I had previously attended. My pre-aviation career in IT, telecommunications and business development had given me my share of conferences. This was profoundly different in that the whole setup was rigged towards the goal. The speakers covered the most relevant, interesting aspects of career development within the helicopter industry."

By Steve Goldsworthy - Sensory overload is all I can think of as I strap on a Gentex helmet, hook up my full body harness to a restraint hook, and sink into my seat as the giant Sikorsky H3H helicopter lifts off into the fog.

In seconds that big open sliding door reveals nothing but grey as we climb out IFR from KLGB. From my seat I can watch the pilots as they call out altitudes, turns and VOR headings. A few seconds later, we are on top, but since we are still on an IFR departure, we’re still flying on the gauges.

By Caterina Hessler - The state of Thuringia, the “green heart” of the Federal Republic of Germany is famous for its vast forests and the low mountain range of the “Rennsteig.” The capital Erfurt is the home of the state´s police helicopter squadron. The pilots there fight for law and order and sometimes for people´s lives, too.

By Ron Whitney - An invitation to visit with the Alabama Department of Public Safety (Alabama State Troopers) Aviation Unit and observe training in the field is not something you pass up.  This is a rare opportunity - one in which you get a first hand look at the unique capabilities and value of such a unit. Little did I know before exactly how capable these folks really are.

By Matt Zuccaro - Over the 40-plus years that I have been in the helicopter industry, I—like many of you—have experienced the expression of negative comments from the public, elected officials and press regarding helicopter operations. A good part of my day at HAI involves my response to such comments. These thoughts are not limited to any particular helicopter activity or geographic area. Operations such as air tours, corporate flights, photography, ENG, and training are all targets. Not even EMS, firefighting or law enforcement are spared.

By Brad McNally - Today, helicopters conduct a wide variety of missions in all corners of the world. However, this wasn’t always the case. It took many dedicated people to transform the helicopter from its meager beginnings, to the reliable and capable aircraft that it is today. There were many talented engineers who designed them, craftsman who built them and test pilots who flew them. 

By Bob Barbanes - As many of you know, on Wednesday, April 27th a huge tornado buzz-sawed its way through the state of Alabama, leaving hundreds of people dead and thousands of people homeless.  It was not your typical tornado, in as much as once it touched down in the city of Tuscaloosa (in the western part of the state), it stayed stuck to the ground all the way northeast to the Georgia line and beyond.  The amount of destruction in its wake is astonishing.

By Matt Zuccaro -I am sure most of you are familiar with the various accident reduction efforts within the industry—be they Helicopter Association International, FAA, the International Helicopter Safety Team, Tour Operators Program of Safety, Airborne Law Enforcement Association or the European Helicopter Safety Team. The basic premise of these efforts is to reduce the number of accidents that occur within the helicopter community—either the aggregate number or those that involve fatalities.

By Ed MacDonald - It was a morning like no other.  Key members of the management team sat around the conference table with bleary red eyes and a demeanor which reflected their shared loss and pain from the night before.  Self-doubt and a sense of their own human frailty permeated each team member down to the core.  What could have prevented this tragic event?  Why didn’t they see it coming?

There is a crucial link between the many great aeronautical engineers and talented mechanics that have made rotary wing flight possible and the pilots who have maximized the unique capabilities of the helicopter. This link is the helicopter test pilot.  The test pilot is the one who shows what the aircraft is capable of, pushes it to define its limits and provides the feedback necessary for the engineers to refine the design.

Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. company announced the Bell Helicopter “Heroes of Aviation" Series, which pays tribute to the men and women who preserve freedom and save lives while using Bell Helicopters.

By Hunter Old - Once upon a time, you bought and registered an aircraft and it was registered for good as long as you continued to operate it.  However, the days of a permanent registration for all aircraft are gone, causing a new headache for corporate flight departments everywhere.  Under new FAA rules that took effect last fall, for all aircraft (including helicopters) that were registered before October 1, 2010, the registration expires according a table of rolling dates based on the month the current registration was issued.  For example, if your current aircraft registration was issued between March and July of any year, its registration expires some time in 2011.  Once re-registered, each aircraft registration then will have to be renewed every three years.

Flyin VideoArticle, Photos & Video By Lyn Burks

After landing on the big white H, we surface taxi the giant Aircrane, also nicknamed Goliath, across the parking lot of the Orange County Convention Center. Just before the Erickson Aircrane ground marshalling guy puts his arms in the shape of a big X telling us to stop, the pilot not flying asks the pilot if he see’s the little tree on the right side to which he get’s an “affirmative” reply. As the parking brake and nose wheel locks are applied, Randy Erwin, Captain of the Goliath cracks the intercom and says, “not bad for a couple of old farts eh?”

By Barry Pomeroy - The answer to the shortage of qualified helicopter pilots and the ‘gray area’ for certified low time commercial helicopter pilots are; Interns - voluntary second pilots in VFR/SPIFR commercial and HEMS operations. I am Barry Pomeroy, I am a low time Commercial pilot with an existing career, and I am writing this as the result of a failure matrix analysis after observing and participating in the industry for approximately six years. I attend, listen, and read everything I can get my hands on from the helicopter world.

By Bill Winn - The sound of thunder on the near horizon can herald hope or fear, depending on whether you are a drought-stricken farmer or a Golden Retriever with a serious phobia of both the boom and flash of lightening. My dog Max literally climbs into bed between me and Joyce during every thunderstorm, and lies there shivering uncontrollably until the storm has passed. It's like having one of those vibrating beds you find in cheap motels.

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