From battle zones to oil rigs, helicopters often operate in some of the hairiest situations in which pilots are forced to rely solely on cockpit instruments. In an effort to improve safety, the non-profit helicopter safety organization HeliOffshore is using eye-tracking technology to gain a greater understanding of how pilots operate in such scenarios.
Helicopters are versatile machines capable of all manner of maneuvers in the air, but when it comes to takeoffs and landings they are very fussy creatures, preferring flat, level pads, which are scarce in combat and rescue missions. DARPA recently demonstrated a new robotic landing gear system in an unmanned flight near Atlanta, Georgia, that's designed to overcome these limitations by enabling landings on broken or uneven terrain with a high degree of safety.
Felix Baumgartner rose to fame in 2012 by setting a new record for high-altitude skydiving. The Austrian jumped from an altitude of 128,100 ft (39,045 m) over Roswell, New Mexico, US. His latest stunt saw him at the controls of a Bolkov BO105 aerobatic helicopter, seeing how closely he could track a drift car.
The 51st edition of the Paris Air Show got off to a rather gloomy start, with a gray sky threatening to spoil all the static and in-the-air fun. Thankfully, the rain never appeared and Gizmag joined spirited show-goers for a gawk at some splendid show spectacles.
A couple of days ago, we heard how Airbus Helicopters had announced the concept phase of its planned X6 heavy-lift helicopter.
That aircraft will borrow some features from the company's new H160
medium-lift model. Although the H160 was introduced at the Heli-Expo
trade show back in March, its first flight took place on June 13th and
was announced this week at the Paris Air Show.
Airbus Helicopters has just announced the launch of the concept phase of
its planned X6 heavy-lift helicopter. Over the next two years, the
company will be seeking input from corporate customers and evaluating
different designs. Possible applications for the aircraft could include
oil and gas missions, or search and rescue operations.