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INDUSTRY INFORMATION REVELANT TO YOUR BUSINESS


R44 operators to inspect main- rotor blades for possible defects before each flight. Airwolf addressed this through its Alternative Method Of Compliance (AMOC), a certi- fied blade tape that overlaps the skin and leading edge, obviating the need for recurrent inspec- tions and lap-joint painting. “The problem of delamina- tion can be largely avoided if owners install our easy-to-apply blade tapes, protecting the joint in question. We look at our tapes as an effective form of insurance against having to buy new blades which can cost between $25,000 and $40,000,” Airwolf Aerospace Senior Engineer, John Montana said.


Airwolf’s solution, STC-


SR02491CH, uses a proprietary polymer tape, which is bonded to the blade. This prevents the leading edge skin debonding, which occurs when the bond line is exposed due to erosion of the blade’s painted finish. The blade tape covers the outboard section of the rotor blade where history has shown debonding to occur. It seals the bond line making penetration by foreign objects impossible, and drastically reduces the risk of blade skin delamination. “Pre-flight blade inspections


required by the A.D. are now a breeze as all the pilot has to do is look up and see the blade tape is still covering the bond line. It is a great solution to a problem that affects more than 3,000 helicopters in the U.S. alone,”


adds Montana. Working with 3M, Airwolf modified 3M’s tape that was originally designed for use on CH-47 Chinook and S-70 Blackhawk helicopters, to make it compatible for the smaller, narrower Robinson rotor blade. Applied as per Airwolf’s detailed instructions, the tape prevents delamination without causing any loss in aerodynamic per- formance. The current price of the rotor blade protective kit is $1299 for the R22 and $2499 for the R44. Once the initial kit and STC has been purchased, Airwolf offers blade tape repair kits costing $500 for the R22 and $1000 for the R44. ◆


HAI's Flight Instructor of the Year Award


For more than 50 years, HAI


has recognized the outstanding achievements and exceptional merits of individuals and organ- izations through the Salute to Excellence Awards program. Nominations are currently being accepted for the 2012 program, to be held Feb. 13 during HELI- EXPO 2012 in Dallas, Texas. Instructor of the Year Award, and/or any of the other Salute to Excellence Awards, and salute those who deserve to be recog- nized in 2012 for their contri- butions to the rotorcraft com- munity. ◆


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