Tag Archives: bell

Bell Announces Delivery of 300 th Bell 505 Jet Ranger X

 Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE:TXT) company, announced today
the 300th Bell 505 Jet Ranger X delivery to the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF). The first Bell 505 was
delivered in 2017, and today there are 300 aircraft in operation across six continents, with customers
logging more than 70,000 global fleet hours.


“The Bell 505 is one of Bell’s fastest growing commercial programs to date, surpassing several significant
milestones since its inception,” said Michael Thacker, Executive Vice President, Innovation and
Commercial Business. “As we continue to see interest for the aircraft in Public Safety, Utility and
Corporate transport, Bell has invested in new products and technologies to expand the Bell 505’s
capabilities.”


The latest Bell 505 platform advancements include the Garmin G1000H NXi avionics suite, Flight Stream,
Autopilot, Lightweight EMS interior, Bell Public Safety configuration, Pulselite, FliteStep, LHS Baggage
Door and Moveable Ballast.


“We are proud to take delivery of the 300 th Bell 505 and expand our fleet capabilities.” said Lt. Col. Brian
Lundy, commanding officer of the JDF Air Wing. “JDF and Bell have a strong history together and today’s
delivery marks another milestone in our relationship.” The Force’s sixth Bell 505 will support Public Safety
missions to serve the citizens of Jamaica and be operated by its Caribbean Military Aviation School
(CMAS) to train the international rotorcraft pilots of tomorrow.


With a speed of 125 knots (232 km/h) and useful load of 1,500 pounds (680 kg), the Bell 505 is Bell’s
newest five-seat aircraft designed for safety, efficiency and reliability using advanced avionics technology.
Its similarities with the Bell 429 platform allow for a smooth pilot transition as JDF begins training
operations. With a Garmin G1000, the platform shares similar avionics with JDF’s Fixed Wing Trainer
aircraft and reduces pilot workload, enhancing the students’ learning experience.

Bell Delivers First Bell 505 to Ugandan Aviation Company

Fort Worth, TX (Apr. 6, 2021) Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced the
delivery of a Bell 505 helicopter equipped with the Med-Pac Inc. LLC Emergency Medical Services Lite
Interior to BAR Aviation. This marks the first Bell 505 in Uganda and the first Bell 505 designed to
complete medical evacuation (medevac) missions in Africa.


“We are elated that BAR Aviation has chosen the Bell 505 as its Helicopter Emergency Medical Services
(HEMS) platform and will operate the first medevac Bell 505 in Africa,” said Lynette Loosen, regional
sales manager, Africa. “By leveraging the aircraft’s unique design, competitive cost and flexible kit
installation, the platform enables our customers to provide safe and reliable medical services to its
patients.”


BAR Aviation is a Ugandan aviation company known for being the leading operator in the region. Among
its many services, BAR provides air medical evacuation services to support communities and connect
them to life-saving medical support. The Bell 505 will support the work of the Ministry of Health,
Ministry of Tourism, and the police.


“We are proud to accept the delivery of the first Bell 505 in Uganda,” said Barak Orland, CEO, BAR
Aviation. “We saw the need and importance of having an evacuation helicopter in the country that helps
give the citizens of Uganda the best chances of survival in the critical golden hour. The Bell 505 is an
excellent aircraft for the job with state-of-the-art safety features and avionics that allow the pilots to
reach their destinations quickly and safely.”


The Med-Pac EMS Lite Interior offers a carbon fiber deck, back wall equipment rack, oxygen tank and
medical supply bag. The stretcher system can be installed in less than 15 minutes with the 505’s easily
removeable seats and flat floor. The Bell 505 is the only current production short light single-engine
helicopter that can fit a stretcher system.


“We congratulate BAR Aviation on the acquisition of its new Bell 505, which adds another Textron
product to its growing fleet of fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters,” said Jim Evans, CEO, Africair. “As one

of Bell’s independent representatives for much of Africa, Africa has supported helicopter operators
across the continent for over 40 years.  Together with Bell, we will do everything possible to ensure that
the 505 exceeds BAR Aviation’s expectations.”
With a speed of 125 knots (232 kilometers per hour) and a useful load of 1,500 pounds (680 kilograms),
the Bell 505 is designed to be safe and easy to fly while providing unmatched value to the operator.

Bell aircraft used to safeguard food and agriculture amid historic locust infestation

In the last 12 months, food security has been under serious threat from devastating swarms of locusts, destroying crops from East Africa to the Arabian Gulf. With experts warning of a “rolling emergency” 1 that could endanger harvests across the regions for the rest of the year, governments and international organizations face a herculean challenge in controlling the infestations. Aircraft from Bell, the U.S.-based helicopter manufacturer, have been playing a key role in the joint efforts to fight this ancient plague.

According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), desert locusts – whose destructive infestations cause major crop damage – are a species of grasshopper that live largely solitary lives until a combination of conditions promotes breeding and leads them to form massive swarms.

The region’s current crisis began in October 2019 as swarms formed along the Red Sea coastal plains in Yemen Saudi Arabia, Eritrea and Sudan, spreading eastwards across the Arabian peninsula and further south in Africa in the following months.

By January, Kenya, one of the countries hardest hit by the crisis, was already experiencing its worst outbreak of desert locusts in 70 years. To target this problem, authorities contracted South African helicopter operator BAC Helicopters, who had recently purchased three Bell 206L-4 helicopters, to carry out the Emergency Desert Locust Survey and Control operation in an effected part of Kenya.

The helicopters were tasked with surveying vast areas throughout the Marsabit and Turkana counties in Northern Kenya, locating and mapping the locust swarms which were threatening food security through the region. The 206L-4’s were each equipped with specialized Agricultural
Survey Equipment, an FDC Barrier Filter and Satellite Tracking System. Essential data gathered by the survey helicopters was then transferred to both fixed wing and helicopter spraying aircraft, allowing them to accurately target specific areas where the locust swarms were present.

Sameer Rehman, Managing Director of Africa and the Middle East, Bell, commented: “With a number of countries in eastern Africa and some parts of the Middle East at ongoing risk, the FAO has estimated that a locust control plan would cost $76 million to secure agriculture in the
affected region. Bell understands the need to protect the food source of these regions and we’re pleased our products can be essential tools in the collective mission to eradicate the problem.

“When it comes to food security, the stakes are very high so the reliability and capability of every tool used in the fight against locust swarms is paramount. The Bell 206, and newer light aircraft like the Bell 505 have shown time and again that they can be trusted to operate in high
temperatures and with heavy payloads, providing a capable defense wherever the swarms may be present.”

Bell 505

In most years, desert locust swarms tend to die out during dry season. However, with unusually high rainfall in 2020 in certain regions, the exponential growth in the populations has not abated,
creating the specter of further swarms over the coming months.
The FAO states that countries most affected by the locust situation are Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia in Africa as well as Yemen, Saudi Arabia and parts of the UAE and Oman in the Middle East.

Bell APT 70 Successfully Completes NASA’s Systems Integration and

Fort Worth, Texas (1 October, 2020) – Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, announced today the successful flight of the Bell Autonomous Pod Transport (APT) 70 as part of a joint
flight demonstration with NASA. Bell was selected to participate in NASA’s Systems Integration and Operationalization (SIO) activity in 2018, which includes multiple flight demonstrations focusing on
different types of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and their flight environments.


The objective of Bell’s SIO demonstration was to execute a Beyond Visual Line-of-Sight (BVLOS) mission in an urban environment transitioning into and out of Class B airspace representing future commercial
flights. Mission results will be used to evaluate and demonstrate Detect and Avoid (DAA) and Command and Control (C2) technologies for use in future certified operations in controlled and uncontrolled
airspace. Data collected during the demonstration will be used to support future standards development and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification guidelines.


“This successful demonstration highlights the great potential for the APT 70 to complete complex
missions for businesses and healthcare providers,” said Michael Thacker, executive vice president,
Innovation and Commercial Business. “With teammates like NASA, we can carve a path forward for future commercial operations to solve the cargo and goods transportation challenges our world currently faces.”
Launching from Bell’s Floyd Carlson field in Fort Worth, TX, the APT 70 flew a preprogrammed 10-mile circuit path along the Trinity River. Once armed from the ground control station, the APT 70 initiated a
vertical takeoff.

The vehicle then rotated to fly on its wings where it became nearly silent to the ground below. The vehicle executed its mission profile at an altitude of 500 feet above ground level. The route
included a road crossing and transition in and out of Class B airspace. Communication between the ground station and the aircraft was maintained through a redundant datalink. A prototype airborne detect
and avoid system, along with visual observers, provided the remote pilot with awareness of air traffic in
the vicinity and recommended flight maneuvers.

NASA is excited to partner with Bell to help accelerate routine UAS operations into the national airspace
with this successful flight demo,” said Mauricio Rivas, UAS integration in the NAS project manager at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center. “Our efforts with Bell and our other SIO industry partners will
help commercial UAS move closer towards certification to make missions like this transport flight a
common event.”

Bell’s technology partners for the demonstration include Xwing and the University of Massachusetts
Amherst’s Center for Collaborative Adaptive Sensing of the Atmosphere (CASA). Integrated onto the APT
70 is Xwing’s airborne, multi-sensing detect and avoid system. Xwing’s system comprises of radars, ADS- B, visual system and onboard processing to provide aircraft tracks and pilot alerts transmitted to the
ground station. The APT 70 also includes CASA’s intuitive, integrated display to provide pilots with local weather risk awareness and route-based weather alerts issued by their City Warn Hazard Notification
System deployed in the DFW metroplex.


It is envisioned that in the future, an operational APT 70 could provide efficient, rapid and dependable transport for payloads up to 70lbs. The APT 70 is estimated to move three times as fast as ground transportation. The vehicle is capable of autonomous flight, automatically flying a programmed flight route and handling an array of contingency functions. Potential uses for the APT 70 include medical deliveries,
third-party logistics, offshore delivery, humanitarian relief and many more.

Bethlehem Airshow 2019

Noted as one of the coldest airshows on the South African Airshow circuit, this years Bethlehem Airshow was definitely the hottest. The Eastern Free State town of Bethlehem hosted their annual airshow and this year was most probably the best they have ever had, with a large variety of aircraft including the South African Airforce making a welcome return.

The Friday before the show, Little Annie an Antonov 2 took local school kids for some of them their first flight in an aircraft around the town of Bethlehem. At the same time many aircraft arrivals and validations took place to be suitable for the following day.

“Little Annie” AN2

Saturday morning we arrived at the airfield to get some sunrise shots of parked aircraft, not long after that we attended the pilots briefing with Dihlabeng Municipal Mayor Lindiwe Makhalema thanking the pilots and wishing them well during the course of the day. Stephen Fourie was the organiser once again of the fantastic show who also briefed the pilots on the days proceedings in conjunction with Lieutenant Colonel Keith “Fulcrum” Fryer as airboss for the show. Lieutenant Colonel Francois “Hosepipe” Hanekom was Flight safety director and Lieutenant Colonel Keith Andrew was ramp director.

The show opened up with the South African Airforce Golden Eagles Parachute Display team, their jump ship was a 44 Squadron Casa 212 with Lieutenant Colonel Sammy “Guru” Mabidikama, Major Ashley “Sensei” Naxhe and loadmaster Flight Sergeant Manny Ramajela at the controls.

44 Squadron Casa 212

The Cows Pitts Specials added an Extra 300 to their display led by Scully Levin, The Goodyear Eagles performed both a four-ship pitts display in the morning show and the afternoon show with a three-ship. A solo aerobatic display by Andrew Blackwood Murray in his Nashua Extra 300 and a Pilatus B4 Glider was flown by Gary Whitecross.Orsmond Aviation provided a Turbo Thrush for aerial spaying demo. A provincial EMS Bell 222 demonstrated a car accident scene showing off the emergency services and the every day call out scenes around South Africa. Another Bell 222 from Henley Air at Rand Airport flown by Andre Coetzee showed off the helicopter skilfully.

Cows Pitts and Extra formation
Goodyear Eagles
Nashua Extra 300
Pilatus B4
Glider Tug Lambada flown by Derek Hopkins
Free state EMS Bell 222
Free state EMS Bell 222
Henley Air Bell 222

The South African Airforce (SAAF) provide the Silver Falcons Aerobatic Team flying Pilatus PC7MKIIs with Major Omphile Matolane as lead ,Major Tian Stander at number two, Major Sivu Tangana at three and the soloist Major Bheki Shabungu.

Silver Falcons Team 82
Major Bheki Shabungu does a dirty roll in the Pilatus PC7MKII
Lieutenant Charlene Brown and Captain Xander Albasni made sure the Bethlehem crowds could get their Silver Falcons memorabilia

A 2 Squadron Gripen JAS39D flown all the way from Airforce Base Makhado in the Limpopo province, the squadron demonstrated a flat display by Major Mohau “Dobaman” Vundla and Major Kevin “Safron” Chetty as his navigator. This was the first appearance of a Gripen in Bethlehem. An Agusta A109LUH from 87 Helicopter Flying School in Bloemfontein, which was on static display among some of the other visiting civilian static aircraft. Adding to the jet action Pierre Gouws flew Richard Lovett’s Aero L39 and also led the Raptor RVs.

2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen
2 Squadron JAS39D Gripen
Agusta A109LUH
Aero L39 Albatross
Raptors RVs

Andre Van Zyl displayed the Magni Gyrocopter to its full potential Radials were a common sound at this years show with Little Annie An2 flown by Jon Marc-Hill and Juba Jourbert dropping skydivers and later joining up with Ivan Van der Schaar in his Boeing Stearman for a formation display and both their singleton displays. The Puma Flying Lions led once again by Scully Levin flew their three-ship routine .Menno Parson’s Douglas Dc3 gave a brief display flown by Derek Hopkins and Ivan van der Schaar. Menno displayed his popular and only flying P51D Mustang in South Africa. SAA Pilot Trevor Warner also gave a Solo Rv7 display, this being the most homebuilt aircraft in the world.

Magni Gyro
Radial Formation An2 & Boeing Stearman
Douglas DC3
Puma Flying Lions
P51D “Mustang Sally”
P51D “Mustang Sally”
RV7

Capital Sounds provided commentary to both the display line in front of the crowd line, behind the crowd line and by the aircraft parking area across the tar runway at Bethlehem. Brian Emmenis, Leon Du Plessis and Elvis Manene kept the crowds posted on each display on the day.

Menno Parsons & Capital Sounds Brian Emmenis
Silver Falcon Major Sivu Tangana & Capital Sounds Elvis Manene

Bethlehem Airshow well done on a fantastic show this year, to all the organisers, display pilots and ground crews on making the show safe and successful. Looking forward to next years show already.

Please click on Advertisement below to help keep us going!

Launch of Ultimate Heli-port Midrand

Ultimate HELI, a well respected operator that flies fixed wing aircraft and helicopters out of Grand Central Airport. Grand Central Airport which is just up the road from the heli- port, located near the Alan dale off ramp in Midrand.

Bell 206 (Photo by Vincent Nagel)
Agusta A109 Grand ZS-BAX (Photo by Vincent Nagel)

Sunday the 9th December 2018 saw the official opening of the heli port with conjunction with National Airways Corporation (NAC).The gloomy Sunday morning saw invited guests and media being shown around the world class facility.


Agusta A109 Grand ZS-BAX (Photo by Vincent Nagel)

A number of helicopters visited the facility during the course of the day, while others have now taken up as residents at the heli port. Some of the helicopters that one could see was a number of Robinson R44s,Bell206 Jet Ranger, a Airbus H125, an Agusta A109,A119,Bell 430 and a Huey belonging to airshow performer Menno Parsons.

Photo by Camry De Lorme
Bell 430 (Photo by Camry De Lorme)
Bell 206 ZS-RVP (Photo by Vincent Nagel)
Airbus Helicopters H125 ZS-OCA (Photo by Camry De Lorme)
Bell 206 Jet Ranger (Photo by Vincent Nagel)
Bell 206 & Bell Huey(Photo by Camry De Lorme)

The heliport will have space for about 30 choppers and, since Ultimate HELI currently has 12 of its own, that leaves plenty of room for those that are corporately or privately owned. Roseveare knows that at least six or seven property owners within Waterfall own a helicopter, so they can now negotiate convenient storage space with the company.

Robinson R44s (Photo by Vincent Nagel)

Please  click on Advertisement(s) below to help keep us going!


Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial