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Australian VTOL news

General stuff that gets thrown about when Helicopter Pilots shoot the Breeze.
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Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Oct 23 2019, 06:48

VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific

AUSTRALAN HELICOPTER INDUSTRY - CASA Annual Report 2018-2019. Data to 30 June 2019

Research based on the latest CASA Annual Report 2018- 2019 published on website 18 Oct ’19 and changes to CASA Aircraft Register current to 30 Sep ‘19.

On 30 Sep ’19, CASA website stated Australia had 15,647 aircraft registrations of which 13,335 (85%) were non-helicopters.

Helicopters numbered 2,312 and made up 15% of the registrations.

Register changes from 30 Jun ’17 to 30 Sep ‘19
• Helicopter registrations increased from 2,101 to 2,312 = 211. Around 4.5% growth per year.
• Helicopter industry growth is twice the traditional GDP. (Not current one at 1.4%)
• Non-helicopter listings in decline.
Since 30 Jun ’18, the CASA Aircraft Register has grown by only 118. But RW listings increased by 211. Therefore, non-helicopter listing fell by 93!

Australia’s global position – It appears Australia is ranked second in the world for helicopter registrations. (It would be third after Russia which has mainly heavy machines and a small number of small privately-owned machines). Australia has the largest fleet of light helicopters in the world. The list consists of 1,413 piston engined helicopters (61% of helicopter registrations) and 899 turbine powered helicopters (39%).

Of the 899 turbine, 598 are SE helicopters (66%) and 301 are ME (34%). Since 20 Jun ’17, the ME fleet grew from 279 to 301, an annual rate of 3.5% pa.

The Robinson Helicopter Company dominates the Australian register with 1,189 machines, or 51% of all helicopter registrations. The Robinson lead helicopter is the R22 helicopter (616), closely followed by the R44 (545). The Robinson piston engine helicopters make up 85% of the Australian piston fleet. There are only 28 R66 turbine helicopters on the register.

The 301 multiengine helicopters are classified into two categories:
• Below 5,700 kg = 216, and
• Above 5,700 kg = 85.

Recent growth rate trends. From I Jul ‘17 to 30 Sep ’19 are:
• Piston. From 1,256 to 1,413 = 157. (5.5% pa).
• SE turbine. From 569 to 598 = 23. (1.8% pa).
• ME less than 5,700 kg 185 to 216. (7.4% pa).
• ME over 5,700 kg 91 to 85 = Loss 7. (-3.5% pa).

Fleet distribution: CASA data, at 30 Sep ’19, showed helicopters are registered, as follows:
• QLD - 826
• NSW – 470
• WA – 349
• VIC – 301
• NT – 196
• SA – 100
• TAS – 58
• ACT – 6
• Overseas registered – 10. At various locations. All heavy lift – firefighting, etc.

Next latest number and categories of helicopter pilots.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby jimiemick » Wed Oct 23 2019, 11:20

Pretty good read and stats thanks for that.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby GIBO18 » Thu Oct 24 2019, 02:15

Interesting post and thanks for sharing rickshaw.

How accurate would it be to correlate the growth in aircraft registered to the growth of the wider chopper industy? I imagine that as demand increases then the number of airframes would have to increase. In saying that other metrics like total hours flown or industry revenue might be better indicators.

Interested to hear from someone more qualified than myself.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby RotorHead42 » Fri Oct 25 2019, 14:10

Great read, thank you Rickshaw.

Are these numbers you calculations, or can you link to the source please? I'm writing some materials for our company and would be keen to reference these numbers.

I see most of these numbers are not directly from the CASA annual report, and must have involved a decent amount of work with both the CASA register as you mentioned and overseas registers.

Thank you,
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sat Oct 26 2019, 06:05

Good news for UAV fans. Drone remote pilot licences increased from 5664 to 12845 in two years! Does this tell you something? Are you still a disbeliever? Volocopter, the pioneer in Urban Air Mobility (UAM), successfully completed its first manned flight over Singapore’s Marina Bay on 22 Oct ’19. This was the last trial of a demanding test series to verify and validate the ability of Volocopter air taxis to fly over the area – we will tell you why.

The combo course is back
. Airwork Helicopters are advertising the start of an aeroplane school in 2020. This makes it easier for rural pilots to obtain both a FW and RW licence before they head back home to start work. It makes commercial sense, because the overall cost is less than a straight through commercial license. This was a model used by Chopperline many decades ago.

Bristow. At the heavy end of town - great news! Bristow has emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings as has PHI and CHC. This clears the way for a reorganisation of their offshore heavy helicopter operations. Hopefully, opportunities for our senior pilots to upgrade to a command position once they have obtained an MCC(H) Certificate.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby havick » Sat Oct 26 2019, 08:29

rickshaw wrote:
Bristow. At the heavy end of town - great news! Bristow has emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings as has PHI and CHC. This clears the way for a reorganisation of their offshore heavy helicopter operations. Hopefully, opportunities for our senior pilots to upgrade to a command position once they have obtained an MCC(H) Certificate.


Great news, big helicopter companies can have inept CEO’s and managers, and then walk away from a trail of debt and destruction they leave behind and wash their hands of.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby FerrariFlyer » Sat Oct 26 2019, 12:15

Sadly there won't be too many opportunities at Bristow anytime soon. Over the last 5 years they have slowly made nearly 95% of their pilots redundant (140 odd pilots down to 8-9). The airline they own - AirNorth - is also for sale and not as strong as it used to be. Many question whether Bristow will even have a local presence in a years' time. Who would have thought that 5 years ago?!?!

Overrall, offshore has been through a very tough time for many the last 4-5 years though thankfully it appears as though the worst is behind. Hopefully a period of sustainable growth follows.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Evil Twin » Sun Oct 27 2019, 10:36

FerrariFlyer wrote:Sadly there won't be too many opportunities at Bristow anytime soon. Over the last 5 years they have slowly made nearly 95% of their pilots redundant (140 odd pilots down to 8-9). The airline they own - AirNorth - is also for sale and not as strong as it used to be. Many question whether Bristow will even have a local presence in a years' time. Who would have thought that 5 years ago?!?!

Overrall, offshore has been through a very tough time for many the last 4-5 years though thankfully it appears as though the worst is behind. Hopefully a period of sustainable growth follows.


Not sure why anyone would want to drive their career up that particular cul-de-sac, offshore may pay very well and the camaraderie is great but it is the most batsh1t boring 'flying', if you can call it that, you will ever do. Glad I got made redundant when I did!
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sat Nov 2 2019, 21:30

Australian MCC(H) shortages updated

By Rob Rich, Editor. VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific – 31 Oct ‘19 This estimate is based on latest CASA Annual Report 2018-2019 published 19 Oct ’19 and changes to CASA Aircraft Register current to 7 Oct ’19.

Australia: On 30 Sep 2019 CASA website stated Australia had 15,647 aircraft registrations of which 13,335 (85%) were FW and RW 2,312 (15%).
Helicopter registrations are growing at 4.5% per year. This better than FW which has been sliding a little each year.
RW industry growth is twice the GDP an average result over the years.
CASA register shows 899 turbine powered helicopters. Of this number, 598 are single engined and 301 multi-engined.
Since 20 June 2017, the ME fleet grew from 279 to 301, an increase of 7.8%. (or 3.5% pa)
The 301 multiengine helicopters are classified into two categories: Below 5,700 kg = 216, and above 5,700 kg = 85.

Australian flight personnel. CASA Annual Report from 30 Jun ’18 to 30 Jun ’19 shows the number of pilots by category was 4,451:
• ATPL(H) – 763
• CPL(H) – 1,977
• CPL(H) – 807 EX25/81 Class 2 medical
• PPL(H) – 877
• RPL(H) – 27

ATPL(H) – Due to CASA’s regulatory reform processes, the MCC(H) has suffered problems in getting established. This has held up the issue of MCC(H) Certificates. The above 5,700 kg multi-engine helicopter fleet is expected to grow faster as the emergency service sector moves to heavier machines, often used on 24/7 operations, some with two pilots and using NVIS/NVG capabilities.
The annual report showed a decrease in ATPL(H) from 845 at 30 Jun ’14 to 763 by 30 Jun ’19 a loss of 82 over four years or 9.7% (2.4% pa). Therefore the 2020 report may show a further loss of 18 resulting in only 745 ATPL(H) being current on 30 June 2020.

At June 2019, CASA ATPL(H) past licences issued were:
• 2014 = 124
• 2015 = 44
• 2016 = 23
• 2017 = 23
• 2018 = 20 and
• 2019 = 16.

Assuming an attrition rate of 4.5% (due older pilots) a steady fleet growth rate of 3.5%, then we need to produce 8% of present 763 = 61.
MCC(H) problem. CASA has stated only one school is providing MCC(H) Certificates, but it cannot train ATO, supervisors and instructors. At present CASA appears to have few MCC(H) qualified staff who can assess a new facility and approve industry ATO, instructors, etc. This has been a stumbling block due incomplete Part 61 rules for MCC(H) and the associated manual of standards.
The number of ATPL(H) licensed pilots would fall from 763 in 2019 to 745 by 2020
In summary: The MCC(H) needs during FISCAL 2019-2020 would be:
Normal attrition and growth – 61
Estimate CASA staff needed – 12
Industry ATO and instructor training – 7
• A total of 80.

However, when a two-pilot heavy helicopter is introduced into a 24/7 emergency service base, the number of ATPL(H) pilots required increases. A busy 24/7 base requires at least four pilots when a single pilot aircraft is in service. This covers annual leave and other mandatory training during the year. But, a two-pilot operation requires at least eight pilots. Doubling the number of pilots employed within the operation. If four two pilot machines were introduced during the year, 16 pilots with (MCC(H) are needed. This pushes the estimate up to 80 + 16 = 96! The existing significant backlog has not been calculated due to lack of data.

Need more info: Rob Rich, Editor. 0415 641 774 E: robsrich(at)bigpond.com.

You can follow this sage in the complimentary VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific which covers both big noisy helicopters and those tiny pesky drones flying around ‘female only’ nudist clubs.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sun Nov 3 2019, 19:38

ADS-B grant announced for NZ GA. 4 Oct ’19.

TO: New Zealand Readers.

You may be eligible for financial support to help you equip with ADS-B as part of a new $12.5 million ADS-B Transponder Grant announced by the Government. Owners of New Zealand-registered general aviation aircraft who install appropriate ADS-B OUT equipment will be eligible for a grant of up to NZ$2500 plus GST to help with the costs of installation. The grant will apply retrospectively, with compliant ADS-B installations since 14 June 2014 also eligible.

Deputy Director, Air Transport and Airworthiness, Mark Hughes said the grant money will help ensure general aviation aircraft are able to operate in controlled airspace when the proposed ADS-B mandate takes effect in December 2021. “Under the proposed mandate, aircraft without ADS-B equipment won’t be able to fly in controlled airspace from that date, so it’s vitally important that owners equip early so they can continue flying,” Mr Hughes said. “ADS-B brings significant safety benefits to New Zealand’s aviation system, so it’s great this funding will be available to help smaller operators to get over the line with their installations ahead of the proposed ADS-B mandate.

“This grant programme is one of the most generous worldwide and will help with the costs of installing ADS-B equipment for approximately 4,000 general aviation aircraft on a first-come, first served basis.”

To support the uptake of ADS-B IN, up to NZ$500 plus GST will also be made available for those who install suitable equipment to give their aircraft ADS-B IN capability. “Pilots will only unleash the full benefits of ADS-B in the cockpit if they are able to get additional traffic awareness through ADS-B IN alongside their usual visual scanning, so it’s important to consider adding ADS-B IN to your installation,” Mr Hughes said. The ADS-B Transponder Grant scheme will be administered by the Civil Aviation Authority. Eligibility criteria and details about the application process are being developed and will be published on the Authority’s website and sent out to aircraft owners when they are finalised.

In the meantime, if you’re an aircraft owner, make sure you contact your avionics provider promptly to talk about what ADS-B equipment would be right for your aircraft. Please contact us at adsb@caa.govt.nz if you have any questions about the scheme – although we won’t be able to address issues of eligibility until the eligibility criteria are released.

Hope CASA has noted this ........??
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby jimiemick » Sun Nov 3 2019, 20:59

rickshaw wrote:ADS-B grant announced for NZ GA. 4 Oct ’19.

TO: New Zealand Readers

Hope CASA has noted this ........??



Being Australian. And how we tend to do things. CASA will just try to invent something new that costs more and then will not work.

Just like most government grants.


But in all honesty I really hope they do notice and do something similar
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sun Nov 10 2019, 11:24

Push to save rural aviation. Courier Mail 30 Oct ’19.

The Morrison Government is taking aim at unaffordable regional airfares and will push to cut costs and regulations for the struggling bush aviation industry. Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack and the Government was operating consultation with the industry, regulators and authorities to develop a plan to ensure regional aviation remained viable and competitive. A key focus of the regional aviation policy statement would be to target expensive regional airfares and reduce regulatory burdens, so industry remained a thriving channel of economic growth in in the bush, he said.

Queensland LNP Sen Susan McDonald, who led a committee that recently investigated the operation, regulation and funding of bush aviation, said there must be a clear link between safety outcomes and the cost of regulation. She was particularly concerned about regulatory and cost burdens on Australia’s unique helicopter mustering industry as well as the way “unaffordable airfares” on some regional routes were stifling tourism. “I have seen firsthand the struggles of regional aviation; in particular, in Western Queensland and the committee’s report identified a number of challenges for regional communities in air services they have access to,” she said.

Spoke with Susan's Chief of Staff, he said she was really across our struggle with over-complex legislation. I mentioned the coming Air Transport Rules being outed for comment 2020 and implemented 2021. He said that was it becoming a concern as the booming tourist industry in the bush would need more scenic flights and not less. Susan's office is now getting VTOL e-news Asia-Pacific which keeps tabs on things such as what the latest Annual Report really means?

If you are concerned, then join an association which can better represent your industry sector. Watched the terrible fire news tonight. The number of helicopters was amazing. The air and ground heroes should be acknowledged. They are above the best! We really owe them!

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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Sun Nov 10 2019, 20:42

Australian Robinson helicopters – AVGAS problems in hot northern regions.

AHIA Update by Robyn Ironside in The Australian 25 Oct 2019.

An exhaustive investigation into helicopter issues in northern Australia has found a change in fuel composition is to blame. The Australian Helicopter Industry Association appointed an expert panel to undertake the investigation after a Civil Aviation Safety Authority inquiry was unable to reach a conclusion.

The issues related to piston-engine-powered light utility helicopters, such as Robinson model R22 and R44 types, that began experiencing a higher rate of premature engine-cylinder failures.

AHIA president Ray Cronin said that prior to 2013 there were almost no warranty claims for engine cylinders, but since then more than 2,000 barrels had been changed in the region.

In some cases, cylinder failure occurred within the first 100 hours of service, prompting industry officials to try to find the cause. Early investigations indicated extreme heat was the problem, but it was unclear what was producing that heat.

Fuel seemed the obvious answer, but the AHIA ran into difficulty with manufacturers providing limited co-operation, citing “commercial sensitivity concerns”.

Extensive testing was able to ascertain that avgas supplied to aviation operators in northern Australia had undergone significant composition change between 2012 and 2018, with the lead content halved and aromatic hydrocarbons increasing.

“The problem with aromatics is they create a slower burning process, and they get hotter through that process. You’re not seeing cylinder head temperature changes, but the exhaust gas temperature increase is massive,” Mr Cronin said.

“The problem that creates is when enormously hot gases are going past the exhaust valve and heating that whole region up.”

It did not help that helicopters operating in northern Australia were already exposed to elevated temperatures due to the climate and the type of work undertaken, such as mustering at low altitudes where the air is warmer.

Mr Cronin said the report had been provided to CASA and Deputy Prime Minister and Transport Minister Michael McCormack as well as AHIA members. “Our primary objective out of all of this is to see action taken to make this a safer industry,” he said. “We want to hear from CASA how they can contribute to make that happen.”

His advice to helicopter operators in northern Australia was to “shop around” to ensure they were putting the right product in their aircraft and staying on top of maintenance.

“They need to talk to their (avgas) suppliers, get certificates of composition of fuel, and find out what the percentage of aromatics is, the percentage of lead and make a decision,” he said.

A CASA spokesman confirmed that CASA had received the AHIA report and would respond as soon as possible.

A spokesman for Viva Energy, which supplies avgas, said the company did not consider that the issues with the Robinson helicopters in the Northern Territory were related to fuel composition or specification.

“In respect of this AHIA report, Viva Energy has not been approached by the AHIA or its investigation body for technical input, information, review or comment,” he said. “Viva Energy has only just been made aware of the report and we intend to analyse and provide a response to AHIA in due course.”

More soon, we have received the final report.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby havick » Sun Nov 10 2019, 21:25

rickshaw wrote:Australian Robinson helicopters – AVGAS problems in hot northern regions.

AHIA Update by Robyn Ironside in The Australian 25 Oct 2019.

An exhaustive investigation into helicopter issues in northern Australia has found a change in fuel composition is to blame. The Australian Helicopter Industry Association appointed an expert panel to undertake the investigation after a Civil Aviation Safety Authority inquiry was unable to reach a conclusion.

The issues related to piston-engine-powered light utility helicopters, such as Robinson model R22 and R44 types, that began experiencing a higher rate of premature engine-cylinder failures.

AHIA president Ray Cronin said that prior to 2013 there were almost no warranty claims for engine cylinders, but since then more than 2,000 barrels had been changed in the region.

In some cases, cylinder failure occurred within the first 100 hours of service, prompting industry officials to try to find the cause. Early investigations indicated extreme heat was the problem, but it was unclear what was producing that heat.

Fuel seemed the obvious answer, but the AHIA ran into difficulty with manufacturers providing limited co-operation, citing “commercial sensitivity concerns”.

Extensive testing was able to ascertain that avgas supplied to aviation operators in northern Australia had undergone significant composition change between 2012 and 2018, with the lead content halved and aromatic hydrocarbons increasing.

“The problem with aromatics is they create a slower burning process, and they get hotter through that process. You’re not seeing cylinder head temperature changes, but the exhaust gas temperature increase is massive,” Mr Cronin said.

“The problem that creates is when enormously hot gases are going past the exhaust valve and heating that whole region up.”

It did not help that helicopters operating in northern Australia were already exposed to elevated temperatures due to the climate and the type of work undertaken, such as mustering at low altitudes where the air is warmer.

Mr Cronin said the report had been provided to CASA and Deputy Prime Minister and Transport Minister Michael McCormack as well as AHIA members. “Our primary objective out of all of this is to see action taken to make this a safer industry,” he said. “We want to hear from CASA how they can contribute to make that happen.”

His advice to helicopter operators in northern Australia was to “shop around” to ensure they were putting the right product in their aircraft and staying on top of maintenance.

“They need to talk to their (avgas) suppliers, get certificates of composition of fuel, and find out what the percentage of aromatics is, the percentage of lead and make a decision,” he said.

A CASA spokesman confirmed that CASA had received the AHIA report and would respond as soon as possible.

A spokesman for Viva Energy, which supplies avgas, said the company did not consider that the issues with the Robinson helicopters in the Northern Territory were related to fuel composition or specification.

“In respect of this AHIA report, Viva Energy has not been approached by the AHIA or its investigation body for technical input, information, review or comment,” he said. “Viva Energy has only just been made aware of the report and we intend to analyse and provide a response to AHIA in due course.”

More soon, we have received the final report.


It will be interesting to hear CASA’s response, if at all.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Nov 13 2019, 07:12

Regional Express gets govt approval to hire overseas pilots, engineers
Source: Australian Aviation e-news 12 Nov ‘19
Quote:
Regional Express (Rex) says it has received federal government approval to bring in overseas pilots, engineers and flight instructors to help overcome what it describes as a “critical skills shortage” in the industry.

The airline said on Mon 11 Nov ’19, day it has been granted a five-year labour agreement (LA) by the Department of Home Affairs that allowed the company to hire workers in those three areas from overseas on temporary skills shortage visas. The visa allowed those workers to apply for permanent residency after three years.

Rex deputy chairman John Sharp said the shortage of pilots, aircraft maintenance engineers and flight instructors had “severely impacted” the airline group in recent times. “The Rex Group is confident the LA will provide much needed assistance in helping us fill up our establishment for pilots and engineers so that we can continue to provide regular, reliable and affordable air services to regional and remote communities throughout our vast regular public transport (RPT) network in every state in Australia,” Sharp said in a statement.

“The LA also allows accessibility to more flight instructors and this will bolster our capability to produce more pilots at our state-of-the-art pilot academy, the Australian Airline Pilot Academy (AAPA), based in Wagga Wagga, NSW, thereby perpetuating the cycle of pilots to meet the needs of the Rex Group and the broader aviation industry in Australia.”

Rex has said previously it had been, at times, forced to cancel flights due to not having its usual contingent of stand-by pilots rostered for duty.

Industry demand increases, according to the 2018-2037 Boeing Pilot and Technician Outlook showed 790,000 new pilots would be needed over the next two decades across the commercial, business and helicopter sector. Further, it forecast demand for 754,000 new aviation technicians between now and 2037.

Asia Pacific represented the largest source of demand with 31% all new pilots, 34.1% of all technicians and 36.1% of all cabin crew to be recruited in the region between now and 2037.

In July 2018, a report found Australia had an insufficient number of pilots with the necessary skills, experience and aptitude to fly and command aircraft operated by Australian airlines. Further, it said the situation was getting worse.

The report was written by a panel of experts shared by The Australian Aviation Associations Forum and comprising representatives from Aircraft Structural Contractors, Aviation Australia, Basair Aviation College, QantasLink, the Regional Aviation Association of Australia, the Regional Express Flight Training Academy and Virgin Australia.

Sharp said Rex would continue to seek local workers to fill these pilot, flight instructor and engineering roles, noting its pilot academy at Wagga Wagga had been training pilots for the past 10 years. “The Rex Group will continue its search for skilled workers in Australia and is 100 per cent committed to supporting local employment by ensuring that the employment of Australian workers will take precedence over skilled workers from overseas,” Sharp said.

In August 2018, Qantas has secured approval from the federal government to recruit up to 76 overseas pilots and instructors for its regional wing QantasLink to help with pilot training. The move was aimed at bringing in simulator instructors and experienced pilots to support QantasLink’s training program.
End quote:

The problem with is data from the heavy metal people, is that a trend has started in the USA where experience heavy helicopter pilots can be placed into the regional airlines training programs. Any of course UAM and Uber style Air Taxi operators will also be stealing helo drives and engineers. So how do we stop the rot? Rewrite CASR Part 61 back into English? And get the engineers training rules overhauled and simplified so more trainees can wander forth??
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Nov 20 2019, 10:53

Switzerland’s KOPTER SH09 designers making progress.

Switzerland is a member the European Authority Safety Authority (EASA), Cologne, Germany. In relation to aircraft rules, the Swiss often query some of the philosophies put forward by EASA’s 800 aviation experts. The continuing development of the Kopter SH09 is an example. The 2.5 metric ton, single engine, Kopter SH09 stands out from the competition. It offers exceptional hot and high performance, a flexible engine concept and a low noise signature due to the newly developed dynamic assembly and a shrouded tail-rotor. The flat floor and unique high ceiling cabin can seat 5 to 8 in crashworthy seats. Loading of cargo or stretchers is can be done through rear clamshell doors. As one of the fastest single engine light helicopters is has a cruising speed of 145 knots and a range of 800 km (430 nm).

Being a Swiss product, it will no doubt be tasked on very high-altitude rescues missions.

Will it pass CASA's new regs? Comments appreciated.
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Nov 27 2019, 15:08

African Swine Fever. An opportunity for mustering and drone operators.

Source: Australian Aviation magazine. Issue 375.

Australian Pork Limited’s CEO Margo Andrae recently told ABC News an African Swine Fever outbreak in Australia would cost $2 billion over five years. Not only is our pork supply at stake but the jobs of 36,000 Australians are at risk,” Ms Andrae said. The disease is extremely contagious and is 80% fatal. There is no vaccine for the disease yet, and it has been estimated more than 200 million pigs have become victims around the globe.

Margo stated feral pigs in Australia are not yet infected. However, if they were, it would be a disaster, as the disease is so contagious. It would spread quickly into our domestic pork industry. Margo later stated we must try and eradicate our feral pigs before the disease comes across from Timor Leste. It would be far too late if we waited until it is detected on our shores.

“When an uninfected feral pig is euthanised; say by an aerial shooting program, we can leave the carcass to rot. However, a dead infected pig must be taken away to a quarantine area and destroyed otherwise other pigs eating the infected carcass would become infected. Removal of infected carcasses would be a logistic nightmare; especially in rugged terrain!”, said Margo.

China recently announced they were now short of 10 to 20,000 tons of pork each year due to the mass slaughtering of diseased animals. They look to Australia to send beef to provide the protein to replace pork losses. But we are suffering from a severe drought and floods which caused an enormous loss of cattle recent years and cannot met China’s demands.

Australia achieved many accolades for the eradication of bovine tuberculosis from 1970 to 1997. This involved a large number of aerial shooters, and the extensive use of light helicopters. Today, the number of piston engined helicopters Australia number almost 1,400 of which one third are probably involved within the mustering industry and able to carry out aerial culling of feral animals. The eradication of feral pigs prior to African Swine Fever getting to Australia would require enormous resources; however, there is no other option.

This creates an opportunity for the light helicopter and drone operators to suggest a plan for an eradication program. As feral pigs very active after dark, new drone technologies could be used at night, allowing another cost-effective solution.

The pending availability of small armed drones may be another weapon against feral pigs!
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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby Gonsky » Wed Nov 27 2019, 20:38

Arming drones is a very long way off, military maybe and we are talking hellfires (little overkill for a pig) yet chasing ferals is going to be a hard sell.

The public perception will be a PR nightmare and the greenies will be all over it.

It is highly likely Swine Fever is already here, you only have to flick on one of those Aus border protection shows for 2 minutes and you will see the never ending pile of food that comes in.

The idiots then stand there and say they don't understand, then they get a warning from our crack border force and walk off laughing.

You get serious fines anywhere else in the world yet again we do nothing.

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Re: Australian VTOL news

Postby rickshaw » Wed Dec 4 2019, 13:51

Senate inquiry into CASA and GA

On 3 Dec ’19 it was announced a two-year Inquiry has been launched into the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) and the General Aviation industry (GA).

The Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee (RRAT) will conduct a two-year inquiry into CASA to gauge the effectiveness of regulation it has applied to GA in the past 10 years.

RRAT Chair, Nationals Senator Susan McDonald from Qld, said the aim of the inquiry is to establish how regulation imposed on GA had achieved CASA’s stated aim of balancing safety, relative risk, and economic costs.

The inquiry will look at the social and economic impacts of CASAs decisions on charter businesses, helicopter mustering, agricultural operations and maintenance operators across regional, rural and remote Australia,” she said.

“We want to examine the relevance of the Civil Aviation Act in relation to maintaining the highest safety standards while encouraging general aviation and training. “I have spoken with participants in GA and many feel the past 10 years of rulemaking by CASA has not achieved the stated aim of balance. “This inquiry will look at people’s concerns with CASA and will deliver interim findings in December 2020, followed by a final report in November 2021.”

Senator McDonald has established herself as a champion of aviation in Australia, most famously crossing the floor to vote with independent senators on the Community Service Flight legislation disallowance motion in October. McDonald was the only coalition member to do so. She was elected to the Senate for QLD in the 2019 Federal Election and made RRAT Chair in July.

In detail: Under Standing Order 25 (2) (a), the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee will inquire into and report on the current state of Australia's general aviation industry, with reference to aviation in rural, regional and remote Australia.

The committee will consider the operation and effectiveness of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) and other relevant aviation agencies, with reference to:

The legislative and regulatory framework underpinning CASA's aviation safety management functions, including: the application of the Civil Aviation Act 1988 and the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations 1998 to Australia's aviation sector, and whether the legislation is fit for purpose; The safety and economic impacts, and relative risks, of CASA's aviation safety frameworks; and the engagement of CASA with other relevant Australian Government agencies; The immediate and long-term social and economic impacts of CASA decisions on small businesses, agricultural operations and individuals across regional, rural and remote Australia; CASA's processes and functions, including: its maintenance of an efficient and sustainable Australian aviation industry, including [b]viable general aviation and training sectors; The efficacy of its engagement with the aviation sector, including via public consultation; and its ability to broaden accessibility to regional aviation across Australia, considering the associated benefits of an expanded aviation sector; and any related matters.

The committee will present its interim report on or before the final sitting day of December 2020 and will present its final report on or before the final sitting day of November 2021.

Contacts: Committee Secretary. Senate Standing Committees on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport, PO Box 6100, Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600. Tel: +61 2 6277 3511. E: rrat.sen@aph.gov.au

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