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EDITORS LETTER

LOOKING FORWARD

With an economy in the early stages of what seems to be a slow recovery it is encouraging to learn that rotorcraft pro- grams are bouncing back.

The Armed

Reconnaissance Helicopter (ARH) is back in the news. The Presidential helicopter program is in the news. And quietly lead- ing the way are several “optionally piloted” aircraft programs.

OPTIONALLY PILOTED ROTORCRAFT

Optionally piloted? Maybe, remotely piloted would be a better

term. Someone, somewhere is going to be flying whatever version of a rotorcraft it is that makes the grade with this endeavor. All the major OEM players are in the game on this project, one that has a huge upside going forward. Speaking on condition of anonymity, one Major General of the U.S. Army commented, “The bean coun- ters are drooling over this technology. The cost savings are huge, the safety factor is huge, and we can deploy dozens of these for the cost of a single aircraft.” I guess that would depend on which version of an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) we are talking about. The cost savings are real and proven. The unique component of these proj- ects is that they are being run with aircraft that have already been developed. Bypassing the years and costs of a full development pro- gram. Although it is customary for research projects to be kept “quiet,” recently a few of the players have made public some ground- breaking achievements. A team of Lockheed and Kaman Aerospace recently released the details of their remotely piloted K-Max®

con-

delivered a sling load of supplies and placed the load upon an egg in the center of a target circle. Impressive, if not amazing. This project, and others much like it, clearly demonstrates that this concept is valid. The ability to deliver supplies, ammunition, parts

cept. Controlled remotely from 125 miles from the landing zone, a K-Max®

New life has been brought to the VXX project. After years of

record-breaking cost overruns the VH-71 was shelved shortly after the Obama administration took office. While the history of this program is long and storied, it looks like the powers that be have decided it is time to revisit the issue and get the President a new ride. I agree. The President of the United States has been riding around in the H-3 variant for over 30 years; it’s well time for an upgrade. Unfortunately this program is much more complicated than it ever needed to be. Being “inclusive” and “supporting the global econo- my” is certainly a nice way to help out our foreign neighbors, but this is the President’s helicopter we are talking about. It should be of American design and manufacture. Sikorsky plans to reintroduce its S-92®

variant of the V-22 Tiltrotor. Hopefully this time out the competi- tion will not be too long or drawn out.

IN THIS ISSUE

This is the first edition of RPM with our new design. Making such a profound change to our magazine has been quite an under- taking, but we think you’ll like what you find. A larger presentation, new design, and more feature stories are just a few of the improve- ments we have made. Change is good, we hope you like the “new” Rotorcraft Pro.

All the Best, Ron

and pieces in high-risk environments, without risking an aircrew as well is huge. I expect we will soon learn of a “live” demonstration of these abilities, in theater. Stay tuned.

THINGS PRESIDENTIAL

Superhawk, and it looks like Bell may present a Presidential

PUBLISHER

Tim Smith

tim@rotorcraftpro.com

MANAGING EDITOR

Ron Whitney

ron@rotorcraftpro.com

ONLINE EDITOR

Lyn Burks

lyn@rotorcraftpro.com

NATIONAL SALES MANAGER

Darian Weaver

darian@rotorcraftpro.com

CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER

Clay Branum

clay@rotorcraftpro.com

CUSTOMER ACCOUNTS

Rick Weatherford

rick@rotorcraftpro.com

DIRECTOR OF WEB SUPPORT

Lynette Burks

lynette@rotorcraftpro.com

SALES EXECUTIVE

Butch Cole

butch@rotorcraftpro.com

ROTORCRAFTPROFESSIONAL

4

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Dana Maxfield

dana@rotorcraftpro.com

CIRCULATION DIRECTOR

Pam Fulmer

pam@rotorcraftpro.com

Rotorcraft Professional™ is published twelve times a year and mailed out on or around the 20th of the month being covered by Mosark Enterprises, LLC, 3100 Lorna Road, Suite 201, Hoover, Alabama 35216. Rotorcraft Professional™ is distributed free to qual- ified subscribers. Non-qualified subscription rates are $57.00 per year in the U.S. and Canada and $84.00 per year for foreign sub- scribers (surface mail). U.S. Postage paid at Birmingham, Alabama and additional mailing offices. Rotorcraft Professional™ is distributed to qualified readers in the helicopter industry. Publisher is not liable for all content (includ- ing editorial and illustrations provided by advertisers) of advertise- ments published and does not accept responsibility for any claims made against the publisher. It is the advertiser’s or agency’s respon- sibility to obtain appropriate releases on any item or individuals pic- tured in an advertisement. Reproduction of this magazine in whole or in part is prohibited without prior written permission from the pub- lisher.

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Mosark Enterprises, LLC, 3100 Lorna Road, Suite 201, Hoover, AL 35216

PRESIDENT

Tim Smith

Executive Offices

3100 Lorna Rd., Ste. 201 Hoover, AL 35216

toll free: 877.768.5550 fax: 205.978.2925

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