Eurocopter will break ground next month on a new helicopter service and simulator facility in Kirkhill Commercial Park near Aberdeen Airport, Scotland, a major hub for offshore oil and gas operations. Construction is to be completed by December. Knight Property Group will design and build the facility. It will consist of a 10,000-sq-ft logistics warehouse and 5,000 sq ft of offices.
Simulator manufacturer Frasca International’s current projects include two full-flight simulators for Bristow Helicopters (a Sikorsky S-92 and a Eurocopter EC 225) and three level-7 helicopter flight-training devices for FlightSafety International (an AS 350 B2, a Bell 206B/206L and a Bell 407). “The helicopter training sector has become a very important market for Frasca,” said John Frasca, vice president.
Three Eurocopter AS 322 Super Pumas, which Bristow Helicopters (Booth No. 1835) operates from Aberdeen, Scotland, to offshore installations in the North Sea, now carry TCAS II traffic collision avoidance systems, and the operator expects to similarly equip its entire Super Puma fleet by 2010. Bristow announced on Friday that it has designated the Sikorsky S-92 as its next type for TCAS II certification.
“We look forward to better days.”
As part of an effort to reduce the number of fatal helicopter crashes, safety experts are promoting widespread use of terrain and traffic alert systems that are commonplace in turbine-powered airplanes. Offshore helicopter operator Bristow Group has developed and certified TCAS II (traffic collision avoidance system), a worldwide first for helicopters.
Rotorcraft Leasing has acquired 53 Bell 206 single-engine helicopters and related assets operated by the Bristow Group in the Gulf of Mexico for $65 million. The deal includes spares; bases at Rockport, Texas, and Abbeville, La.; and offshore fueling equipment. Most of Bristow’s affected employees are expected to be offered positions
Bristow Helicopters has unveiled plans for new European headquarters in Aberdeen, Scotland. The building at Kirkhill Commercial Park at Dyce Airport includes 12,000 sq ft of office space, 6,000 sq ft of classrooms and 11,500 sq ft available for up to four flight simulators. Two new simulators, one for the Eurocopter EC 225 and one for the Sikorsky S-92, will be installed during the construction phase.
The Alerts (aircraft logging and event recording for training and safety) system developed by Appareo Systems and the Bristow Group received the American Helicopter Society’s Harry T. Jensen Award at the AHS Forum 64 conference in Montreal last month.
Bristow Helicopters has taken delivery of all six Sikorsky S-92s it had on order. The 26,500-pound-mtow twins will fly to offshore oil and gas installations from Scatsta Airport in Shetland. The £70 million ($140 million) investment includes the helicopters, training, tools and equipment. The S-92 fleet will support the integrated aviation consortium, the partners of which are Shell, BP, CNR, BP and Petrofac.
Investigators are continuing to look into the July 16 North Sea crash of a Sikorsky S-76A+ operated by Bristow Helicopters. The accident claimed the lives of all 11 on board the rotorcraft, which was preparing to land at Shell UK’s Santa Fe Monarch drilling rig in the Leman Field, 45 mi north of Lowestoft, England. As it approached the rig at 7:45 p.m.