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News
Headlines for 2012
Disclaimer: Nordic Rotors has no intention in taking stand in any business related matters whatsoever. We do not publish any speculations, rumours or questionable facts. However, we can obviously not guarantee the absence of factual errors. The content shall not be used as a reference to business associated decisions, nor should it be used in articles or stories covering our subjects. If you find anything on this page that you find misleading or incorrect, please contact us as soon as possible, and we will be happy to correct it.
Finnish Border Guard adds two Super Pumas
22 December, 2012
[Helsinki] The Finnish Border Guard is expanding its Eurocopter fleet with the acquisition of two additional AS332 L1 Super Puma helicopters. The purpose of the acquisition is to replace the AB/B412 helicopters. The main tasks performed on the new helicopter will be maritime SAR, border surveillance, other rescue tasks and patient transportation as well as executive assistance for other government agencies.

With deliveries scheduled for 2015, the new rotorcraft will be configured as the AS332 L1e version, incorporating the integrated advanced cockpit and automatic flight control systems used on Eurocopter’s EC225 helicopter.

The capability of the Helsinki Air Patrol Flight will be enhanced because of the helicopters’ modern equipment such as the de-icing system that allows operation in all weather conditions, a four-axis autopilot, new generation EO/IR -system as well as extensive maritime SAR and medical equipment. New equipment and improved performance will benefit especially maritime SAR capabilities in the Gulf of Finland region.

The Finnish Border Guard already operates three AS332L1 rotorcraft, which are assigned to its Turku base on the southwest coast of Finland. The service has logged nearly 25 years experience with these Super Pumas – validating the service’s reputation for professionalism and effectiveness, while also confirming the helicopter’s capabilities in even the most extreme environment.

The overall cost estimate is 62 million euro as per the order authorization from the Finnish parliament. The project is partially funded by the External Borders Fund, EBF.
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Skärgårdshavets Helikoptertjänst buys three EC135s
12 December, 2012
[Donauwörth, Germany] The Finnish air medical company Skärgårdshavets Helikoptertjänst (SHT) has purchased four brand new Eurocopter EC 135 P2is to modernize its helicopter fleet. The fast-paced deliveries were conducted in the fourth quarter of 2012.

The new helicopters are replacing three older EC135s operated by SHT, boosting its total inventory to five EC helicopters, which are flown from bases across the country.

SHT has logged 11,000 hours to date with its fleet of EC135s. The company began emergency medical airlift services and air ambulance flights in 1990 with a Bo 105 CB, which provided 15 years of loyal service.

SHT will utilize the new rotorcraft at the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) bases in Helsinki, Turku, Tampere and Mariehamn. Another helicopter is used for HEMS crew training and as a backup aircraft.
Worldwide, there are more than 1000 EC135s in service; around 50% are for emergency medical services.

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Svalbard selects Lufttransport for SAR
10 December, 2012
[Norway] The Norwegian company Lufttransport has been awarded the new Search and Rescue (SAR) / Transport contract for Sysselmannen on Svalbard Island in the northernmost part of Norway. The contract will be effective from 1 April 2014, and the new operator will be replacing Airlift that has been on the island since 1 April 1996 (with a renewal in 2004). The presence of helicopters in the area will be strengthened by placing two AS 332 Super Pumas on the island instead of one Super Puma and one Dauphin.
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Denmark buys nine MH-60R Seahawks
9 December, 2012
[Washington D.C., Maryland] On 6 December the U.S. Navy announced that the Danish government has signed an official letter of offer and acceptance formalizing its intent to buy nine Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk helicopters and comprehensive logistics support for its Maritime Helicopter Replacement Program.

Valued at US $686 million (DKr 4 billion), the aircraft will be procured via the U.S. Government’s Foreign Military Sales program, the same program used for the acquisition of 15 UH-60M Black Hawks for Sweden.

"It's great news that the Danish government has selected the U.S. Navy's MH-60R, an aircraft we believe is the world's most capable multi-mission maritime helicopter," said Rear Adm. Paul Grosklags, Program Executive Officer, Air, ASW, Assault and Special Mission Programs. "Danish pilots and crew will be able to fly with the confidence that these aircraft have been proven operationally capable at sea and have the full logistics support already in place to ensure they are ready and able to fly anytime, anywhere in the world."

Denmark is the second country to buy MH-60R helicopters following Australia’s purchase of 24 aircraft in 2011. All nine aircraft will be delivered to the Danish government by 2018.

The Danish aircraft are configured for search and rescue or anti-surface warfare operations, including defending Danish interests in the North Atlantic, executing anti-piracy operations, and conducting other missions during international deployments.
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Norwegian AS350 lost in Germany
5 December, 2012
[Lübeck, Germany] Two people lost their lives after a Norwegian helicopter disappeared under unknown circumstances on a flight between Lübeck in Germany and Halmstad in Sweden on 5 December. The aircraft, an AS350, went missing around 14:00, while situated over the Bay of Lübeck. The pilot was from Norway and the other person, who was employed by the costumer for the mission, was a Romanian citizen.

On Thursday, 6 December, a waterproof backpack with personal items and a laptop was found at the beach of Pelzerhaken, north of the bay. The content later turned out to belong to the passenger.

On Thursday, 13 December, the submerged AS350 was found by the German mine hunter Passau. Passau is one of several ships that have been scanning the seabed for the ditched aircraft the past days. Two bodies were soon found in the vicinity, within 50 meters of the helicopter. They were later identified as the two occupants.

On Saturday, 15 December, ten days after the accident, the aircraft was salvaged from the sea.

The massive search and rescue operation was coordinated by the German rescue center in Glüksburg for many days, but as the extensive action gradually turned into a meticulous search enterprise the police in Lübeck took over the responsibility. Several ships from the German Navy were engaged in thorough sonar searches over the seabed in large parts of the bay.

The cause of the accident is unknown, but it is currently being examined by the German Federal Bureau of Aircraft Accident Investigation (BFU) in Braunschweig.

The Neustadt Police made a statement regarding a technical abnormality in its initial findings, but that is irrelevant until BFU has made a thorough examination of the whole event and the complete aircraft, with all contributing factors, and left a formal statement or report.
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HeliAir buys first Cineflex Elite in Europe
11 November, 2012
[Stockholm] HeliAir Film and HeliAir Sweden announced that the two companies have acquired a brand new Cineflex ELITE gyro-stabilized camera system for its filming operations. The Cineflex ELITE integrates the award-winning ARRI Alexa-M Super 35 Digital Cinema camera and the Canon 4K Digital Cinema lenses into a 5-axis gyro-stabilized Cineflex system.

“Over the last year we’ve received a lot of requests from Swedish and international film makers for a camera system with the same stability as our original Cineflex V14, but with an Arri Alexa Camera. Today we are finally here to deliver it” says HeliAir Film’s CEO Tobias Larsson. “Off course, it’s not only about owning the right equipment, you really need to have the experience and a skilled helicopter service behind you in order to survive in this business.”

HeliAir’s key persons have produced aerials since 1998, and its staff has over 1000 hours of experience in aerial film work. Some of its more famous works are the aerials for 16 countries of the Survivor Series (“Expedition Robinson”) and a long list of commercials, feature films and sporting events for the international market. Its new ELITE will be operated parallel to the company’s Cineflex V14.

The Cineflex ELITE are the newest edition in the famous Cineflex family, with rock steady imagery in the harshest weather conditions. It can easily be integrated onto a wide variety of platforms, and it is said to be a very rapid system to rig on a helicopter compared to other Super 35 format digital production systems on the market.

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Helicopter accident in Porjus
8 November, 2012
[Porjus] A helicopter was involved in an accident near Porjus, between Jokkmokk and Gällivare, earlier today. The aircraft was engaged in a training flight when a mechanical damage occurred following a landing. None of the two occupants were injured in the accident.
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Stockholm’s HEMS to stay in Värmdö
7 November, 2012
[Gustavsberg] Stockholm’s HEMS station is to stay in Värmdö municipality. Stockholm’s County Council has submitted a formal request to Värmdö’s Municipality Board, where it wishes for a new location for the station within the municipality. The county says that it strives to maintain the helicopter in Värmdö for a long time to come, but it underlines that the communications have to be good in order for the operation to work.
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Seven AW139s for the Swedish SAR
16 October, 2012
[Norrköping] The Swedish Maritime Administration has signed an agreement with the Anglo-Italian helicopter manufacturer AgustaWestland SpA to acquire seven new AW139 helicopters for its nation-wide search and rescue (SAR) service. The first delivery is expected in May 2013. The agency states that “[the] AW139 is a proven rescue helicopter that is optimal for Swedish conditions and certified according to international standards.”

The Maritime Administration is the agency responsible for Swedish sea- and air rescue. A key part of the business is its helicopter service that is available for rescues at sea and over land. They are available at five duty stations along the Swedish coast - Ronneby, Visby, Gothenburg, Norrtälje and Umeå. They are in alert around the clock all year and ready to commence an action within 15 minutes after an emergency call.

“The acquisition of new rescue helicopters provides an increased capacity and capability in sea and air rescue operations, thereby ensuring the operational needs and the current set of requirements” states the agency. The acquisition is part of an ongoing commitment to ensure a sustainable sea and air rescue service in Sweden. The new helicopters will gradually replace the current fleet of Sikorsky S-76C+/++ from mid-2013 until the end of 2014.

“It is very satisfying that, in the future, we will get an improved capacity and the ability to save lives without increasing the total cost of operations”, says Naomi Eriksson, the Swedish Maritime Administration Deputy Director and General of the sea and air rescue department.

The helicopter services are operated by SMA Helicopter Rescue, which is a subsidiary of Sjöfartsverket Holding and administered by the Maritime Administration (Sjöfartsverket). The agency is a public enterprise that is 70 percent funded with fees from the commercial maritime shipping industry.
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Large military exercise in Denmark
5 October, 2012
[Denmark] Denmark is hosting a large three-week military exercise as a part of its annual Special Forces war game. The “Night Hawk 2012” exercise takes place between 24th September and 12th October and it affects large parts of Denmark. It includes several flying units, including helicopters like the EH101, AS550, AW109 (HKP15 from Sweden), CH-47 Chinook (Holland), UH-60 Black Hawk (Austria) and OH-58 (Austria).
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Swedish National Police to buy new helicopters
21 September, 2012
[Stockholm] The Swedish Police has decided to replace its current fleet of EC135s with seven new helicopters. “The present fleet of six helicopters will be replaced, as well as expanded with an additional machine that substitutes for the aircraft that was lost in an accident outside Gothenburg in 2007 [SE-HPS]”, says Göran Ramström, base leader at Air Station Stockholm.

The helicopters used in the famous Hall prison escape back in 2004 are still in use. They have been in service since 2001/2003 and are now in need of replacement. The formal decision to initiate the public acquisition process was recently made by National Police Chief Bengt Svenson. The helicopter procurement contract is expected to be one of the largest within the organization for many years.

The Swedish Police Wing is now underway with a number of initiatives. Fifteen people have been hired as airborne operators, the helicopters are to be staffed round-the-clock, and the brand new are helicopters to be purchased.
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Fuglefjellet AS buys Blue Sky Nordic AS
16 September, 2012
[Norway] Fuglefjellet AS just announced that it has signed a contract to buy its largest competitor in the Norwegian aerial filming market, Blue Sky Nordic. The Fuglefjellet aerial film service, branded as Magic Air, is the market leader in Norway, and by the purchase of its competitor it states that it will be a significant aerial filming company in northern Europe.

“The acquisition brings one of Swedens most experienced aerial film operators, Peter Degerfeldt, to the team, as well as Blue Sky Nordic's Stab-C Compact gyro-stabilisation platform” says Fuglefjellet in a press release. Blue Sky Nordic is formerly known as Ultimax Aerial, known for contributions to the feature films "Kon Tiki" and "The Girl with the Golden Tatoo" and several other productions in Europe.

The Stab-C gyro stabilisation platform may mount any kind of camera, and the company can now do aerial filming operations with 4K cameras, stereoscopic 3D and for IMAX, giving the company the ability to serve any kind of feature film or commercial production.

Magic Air and Blue Sky Nordic are specialized in helicopter filming operations. The Norwegian newspaper smp.no writes that Magic Air uses approx. 350 flight hours a year, and that it expects the flight time to increase by 100-150 hours through the addition of the new Stab-C gyro. Magic Air cooperates with HeliScan AS and Pegasus Helicopter AS for its helicopter services.
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Swedish pilot passes 30.000 hours
10 September, 2012
[Östersund] Yesterday, on 9 September 2012, Jämtlands Flyg’s lead pilot Ulf Grinde made history by passing 30.000 hours airborne time. The astonishing milestone was achieved during a water sampling operation near Lake Uddjaure, south of Arjeplog. Ulf has gained slightly less than 8.000 hours in fixed-wing airplanes and the remaining 22.000 hours in helicopters. This flight time (airborne time, not engine or rotor time) equals up to 3 years, 5 months, 4 days and 6 hours in the air!
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Osterman Helicopter retires
5 September, 2012
[Gothenburg] The helicopter company Osterman Helicopter i Östersund AB has been retired due to bankruptcy. The company, which has deep historic roots in the Swedish helicopter business, closed its activity this week.

Osterman Helicopter derived from the veteran company Ostermans Aero, which closed its flight department in Gothenburg and opened up for the establishment of Osterman Helicopter back in 1981. The company grew extensively over the years, and it was further developed through the acquisition/partnership with several companies on the way, including Laroy Flyg (1) in 1988, Heliflyg in 2000, HelikopterService in 2002, Jämtlands Aero (2) in 2004 and Skyline Helikopter in 2005. It went through a total renewal process in late-2011, where the company was gradually transitioned into Osterman Helicopter i Östersund AB. Osterman had its main bases in Gothenburg and Östersund, and it operated a fleet of ten helicopters, including four helicopters that had recently been released from a leasing deal with the Swedish Armed Forces. The fleet was reduced a week ago, and just prior to the bankruptcy Osterman operated one Long Ranger, one Bell 212, one UH-1H and one AS350B2.

Three of Osterman's previous helicopters have been acquired by HeliAir Sweden. HeliAir states that it will increase its activity in Gothenburg by placing four helicopters in the region.

Osterman Helicopter leaves an historic imprint in the Swedish helicopter industry, in pretty much all lines of business. It has gained a truly legendary status over the years, and its name will forever be associated with professional helicopter services, where no task is too big or no load is too heavy.
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MediCopter buys a Bell 429 for Gotland HEMS
3 September, 2012
[Visby] Scandinavian MediCopter has been awarded the new EMS contract in Gotland. The agreement was initially presented in June, but it has now been sealed following the end of a recent appeal process. Gotland’s Muncipality (Region Gotland) has chosen MediCopter as its medical air service provider for the next 5+2 years, starting from 1 April 2014. The company will use a Bell 429 for the operation. The brand new helicopter type will be replacing MediCopter’s current EC 145 (SE-JJC) that serves the region.


Scandinavian MediCopter is the helicopter division of Scandinavian AirAmbulance. The group is involved in airborne medical transports throughout large parts of Scandinavia.

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Jämtlands Flyg is looking for a new pilot
28 August, 2012
[Östersund] The well-established helicopter company Jämtlands Flyg is looking for new a new mountain pilot for its activities in Jämtland and Västerbotten County. The pilot is preliminary needed from October to December, but the job can lead to a full-time employment in the future.
The minimum requirement is 1000 flight hours, experience in mountain- and forest flying, as well as type ratings on EC120 and R44.


Interested? Contact Jämtlands Flyg's flight operations manager, Mr Trond Renå - trond@jamtlandsflyg.se.

Is your company in need of new pilots or ground crew? Contact Nordic Rotors and we will be happy to announce your job listings on our future career page. Nordic Rotors reaches hundreds of business people and students each day, and we are constantly struggling to improve our services.
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HeliAir Sweden is looking for new pilots
5 August, 2012
[Västerås] The large helicopter company HeliAir Sweden is looking for new full-time pilots. "We are constantly growing and the need for pilots is significant", says president Aram Rubinstein. The company is looking for a total of three experienced pilots for commercial air transports and aerial works. The minimum requirement is 1000 hours, with possible exceptions based on individual circumstances.


Is your company in need of new pilots or ground crew? Contact Nordic Rotors and we will be happy to announce your job listings on our future career page. Nordic Rotors reaches hundreds of business people and students each day, and we are constantly struggling to improve our services.
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CHC wins contracts in the Norwegian Sea
23 July, 2012
[Norway] Statoil has awarded CHC Helikopter Service AS three new helicopter contracts. These includes offshore flights from Kristiansund and Brønnøysund and the search and rescue helicopter stationed at the Heidrun platform.

-I am very pleased that Statoil has chosen CHC Helikopter Service again. We do our utmost to deliver a good, safe helicopter service for Statoil offshore crews, says Arne Roland, CEO of CHC Helicopter Service.

The contract runs from 2014. It is five years and may be renewed one year at a time up to three years, ie the maximum eight years. The value of the contract including options is nearly five billion.

The contract includes a total of eight helicopters in operation. Six of the helicopters to fly passengers in and out of the oil fields Njord, Heidrun, Kristin and Asgard, while two are rescue helicopters. These are large helicopters of the type Sikorsky S-92 and Eurocopter EC 225.

CHC states that this contract is large and important for the company and that it will help to build the foundation for its further development.

In addition to the contract with Statoil, CHC Helikopter Service recently signed contracts with two different consortium of several oil companies. The contracts are for offshore flights from all CHCs bases along the coast of Norway, from Stavanger in the south to Hammerfest in the north. These two contracts will use two Sikorsky S-92 machines and may have a duration of up to nine years. The flights will start this fall and the value in the base period is a minimum of 500 million NOK.
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Emergency landing in Luleå
7 July, 2012
[Luleå] A Robinson R44 helicopter was involved in an emergency landing in Luleå's archipelago earlier today. The aircraft was en-route from Luleå to Kalix when the engine malfunctioned and the pilot, who was the sole occupant on board, was forced into an autorotation decent and a subsequent emergency landing. The pilot managed to land in shallow waters next to Brändön Island without further incidents.
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Arctic Air buys Lapplandsflyg's Kvikkjokk base
10 June, 2012
[Kvikkjokk] The Vuoggatjålme based family company Arctic Air has acquired Lapplandsflyg's operations in Kvikkjokk, including the hangar at the base. Starting this summer, Arctic Air will inherit the shuttle route between Kvikkjokk-Staloluokta-Ritsem and the local ad-hoc operations. The company, which employs a Jet Ranger and a recently acquired Long Ranger, is expected to grow significantly through the deal.

Arctic Air has its roots in the company HB Fjällfrakt, which was established back in 1977. It has maintained its profile as a local company over the years, with its heart and soul in Vuoggatjålme – an idyllic tourism station in the deep mountain world west of Arjeplog, right on the arctic circle. The company partnered up with Norrhelikopter last year, which expanded the (separated) fleet by several helicopters, including two MD500s, a Long Ranger and two Schweizer 300s.

Lapplandsflyg, Sweden's oldest active helicopter company, announced its retirement in April this year. The flight operations is being terminated this summer, and its business will be permanently closed.
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Robinson Safety Course at iTell Helicopters
6 June, 2012
[Västerås] The Västerås based flight school iTell Helicopters will arrange a Robinson Safety Course at Västerås Airport on 15-17 June. The two-day course will be held by no other than Robinson Helicopter Company’s chief instructor Tim Tucker, who is a regular speaker at the Factory Safety Course in California.

The Swedish flight school underlines the fact that this is a very unique opportunity, and that the seminar is going to be very stimulating. It will offer its R44 for self-hire prize if anybody wishes to fly with mr Tucker, or other experienced instructors, on day three. However, these slots will be most likely be very attractive, so the pilots that wishes to fly with mr Tucker have to register in time. More info is available at iTell’s website.


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Finnish R44 in sawing accident
17 May, 2012
[Juuka, Finland] A Finnish R44 was lost after a forest cleansing operation near Juuka in eastern Finland yesterday evening. The Finnish public-broadcasting company Yle states that the accident occurred as the helicopter was returning to the landing site. The pilot, who was the sole occupant onboard, escaped with minor injuries, but the aircraft was destroyed. The Robinson helicopter was in the area to clear forest around power lines with an underslung vertical saw.

The cause of the accident is unknown, but it is currently being investigated by the Accident Investigation Board of Finland (Onnettomuustutkintakeskus).
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Malmen Air Base houses huge air show
12 May, 2012
[Linköping] The Malmen Air Base in Linköping will house one of northern Europe’s largest air shows this summer - Aerospace Forum Sweden 2012. The event starts with a two-day seminar, which brings politicians, industrial leaders, scientists, lobbyists, military chiefs, entrepreneurs and government officials together. It continues with a VIP flight show on day three, and has its grand finale with a public air show on day four. The event will be held from 31 May to 3 June, with the large public show on Sunday (3 June).


Aerospace Forum Sweden 2012 is organized by the Swedish Armed Forces, Linköping Municipality and SAAB. The public air show on 3 June is expected to attract around 100.000 visitors and a large amount of interesting aircraft. Several helicopters are planned to fly, including HKP 10 Super Puma, HKP 14 (NH 90), HKP 15 (Agusta 109), HKP 16 Black Hawk, Alouette II, Bo105, S-76 and Bell 206/212. A number of additional helicopters are anticipated to show up at the static display (preliminary), including HKP 4 (Vertol 107), HKP 5 (S.300), HKP 6 (Jet Ranger), HKP 9 (Bo105), Alouette III, Bell 412, EC 135, Bell 47 and Sea King/Fennec.
A large number of spectacular fixed-wing attendees will show up in the air, including a totally unique 6-ship formation of the historic J29 Tunnan, J32 Lansen, J35 Draken, AJ37 Viggen, JAS39 Gripen and Sk60.

The first public flight display is expected to start at 09:30 AM on 3 June.
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Fiskflyg opens a Kvikkjokk base
25 April, 2012
[Kvikkjokk] Fiskflyg will establish a permanent summer base in Kvikkjokk, starting this summer. The base will offer daily shuttle tours between Kvikkjokk and Staloluokta, with an optional stop in Tarreluobbal. In addition to the shuttle traffic Fiskflyg will offer regional ad-hoc flight operations.

Kvikkjokk is situated on the foot of the Swedish mountain world, some 120 km northwest of Jokkmokk and 90 km (beelining) from Fiskflyg’s main base in Porjus. It is a popular starting point for hiking excursions in the Sarek and Padjelanta region.
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Lapplandsflyg closes its business
11 April, 2012
[Umeå] Sweden's oldest active helicopter company, Lapplandsflyg, has decided to retire. The flight operations will be terminated this summer, and its business will be permanently closed. The shut-down includes the summer bases in Kvikkjokk and Hemavan/Ammarnäs, together with the shuttle routes between Hemavan-Ammarnäs and Ritsem-Staloluokta-Kvikkjokk as well. The routes will be inherited by other companies and the new operators will be published on Lapplandsflyg's website.

Lapplandsflyg was founded by the legendary pilot Bertil Johansson in Porjus in the early-50s. It was the second helicopter company in Sweden after Ostermans Aero AB. The company has operated ambulance helicopters in Norrbotten, Västerbotten, Stockholm, Gothenburg, Västervik and Sälen throughout the years. It has also assisted the Swedish National Police in their operations. The company moved to its newly built main base at Umeå Airport in 1965. Each summer the whole fleet moves from Umeå to the Swedish mountain world – with bases in Kvikkjokk and Hemavan/Ammarnäs. Lapplandsflyg's main business is tourism, reindeer mustering and various aerial works. It has got a fleet of five helicopters – two Long Rangers and three Jet Rangers.
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Massive search after missing Hercules plane
16 March, 2012
[Nikkaloukta] The Swedish Joint Rescue Coordination Centre has scrambled a massive search party following the loss of a Norwegian C-130 Hercules airplane near Kebnekaise yesterday. The aircraft, which carried a crew of five, was en route from Narvik (Norway) to Kiruna (Sweden) to pick up two cars when it disappeared in the Swedish mountain world.

The search and rescue operation has been active since 15:34 local time yesterday, when JRCC alerted the Skellefteå based rescue helicopter Lifeguard 906 (SE-JOJ). Several air resources have been scrambled, including a police helicopter from Boden (SE-HPV), two Norwegian Sea Kings, two Danish EH101 Merlins (that were a part of the same exercise as the lost Hercules plane) and one Swedish HKP 10 Super Puma (10407). In addition to these helicopters four Bell 412s have been offered by the Norwegian Armed Forces, two HKP 15s (Agusta 109) have been launched from the Swedish military helicopter base in Linköping, and an extra rescue helicopter is being prepared by the Swedish Maritime Administration.
Numerous attempts have been made in order to reach the area by air these days, but the rescuers are dealing with bad weather in the harsh mountain areas. Several military fighters and observation airplanes (AWACS, etc) are circling the area and a large ground force is scouting the terrain.

Update: Scattered pieces of the wreckage were found near the ridge between the two peaks of Sweden's highest mountain, Mt Kebnekaise, on March 17 (two days after the accident).
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Report after power line collision released
14 March, 2012
[Åre] The Swedish Accident Investigation Board (Statens Haverikommission, SHK) has published its final report after an accident that occurred on 6 November 2008 near Sulsjö, close to Åre, involving a helicopter with the registration SEJNZ.

The aircraft, a Robinson R44 Raven II, was en route to Åre from the village Frankrike in reduced visibility when it struck a power line and went down in a marsh. The pilot, who was the sole occupant, managed to evacuate the wreckage and crawl to a safe distance before he could alert the rescue services.

The Investigation Board has determined that the accident was caused by the fact that the helicopter, which was operated in decreased visibility and dusk, was flown in too high speed in respect to the actual altitude to avoid collision with obstacles in the flight direction. The Board published seven recommendations in the report, including the desire for a more stringent supervision of instances that may have safety deficits and several improvements of the emergency services.
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Airport limitations for Northern Helicopters
8 March, 2012
[Jönköping] The fast-growing flight school Northern Helicopters faces a setback as the Land and Environment Court of Appeal has decided not to grant a review of the earlier decision to ban local training flights with helicopters at Axamo Airport in Jönköping. Axamo is the main base for Northern Heli.

The dispute between the airport, the County Board and the Environment Office has been going on for years but the court's decision cannot be appealed, says the magazine jnytt.se. The disagreement, which was induced by complaints from neighbors, led to the decision to exclude the helicopter training from the term General Aviation locally, which made the training a violation against the airport’s environmental approval.

“The helicopter school is approved, but they are not allowed to hover around near the airport. The verdict says that the local training activities are prohibited at the airport, other than taking off and landing”, says Sten Norinder, CEO of Jönköping Airport, to jnytt. He further tells the magazine that the airport is disappointed of the situation and that they have made measurements that concludes that the activity is not extraordinarily noisy, and that the noise is within the limits.

“The airport can count on a powerful lawsuit”, says Northern Heli’s CEO Mikael Randheim to jnytt. “This causes the loss of several millions of SEK, so we want to be compensated. I still maintain that they cannot stop us, there are EU rules that stipulates this”. Northern Heli plans to report the municipality of Jönköping to the Parliamentary Ombudsman (Justitieombudsmannen). The company has further announced that it is assessing the possibility to move to Torsvik industrial area from Axamo Airport in order to maintain its operations.

The Swedish Flight Planning Centre has issued a NOTAM (notice to airmen) regarding the limitation:
"AERODROME LIMITED, HELICOPTER SCHOOL FLT NOT PERMITTED FROM: 06 FEB 2012 11:42 TO: 07 MAY 2012 12:00 EST."
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Norway preselects the NH90 for SAR duties
7 March, 2012
[Norway] NHIndustries announces that Norway has preselected the NH90 helicopter for the ongoing NAWSARH (Norwegian All Weather Search And Rescue Helicopter) competition aiming at replacing Search and Rescue helicopters operated by the RnoAF 330 th Squadron.

“We are proud and honored to have been pre selected by the Norwegian Ministry of Justice for the NAWSARH competition, we strongly believe the NH90, embedding state of the art technologies is providing the operators the best solution to perform the future Search and Rescue missions in the most demanding conditions” explains Michel Polychroniadis head of NHIndustries.

NHIndustries further states that the NH90 offered to Norway for the NAWSARH competition is the optimal platform for the Norwegian Rescue service since it is able to operate in the harshest weather conditions to perform Search and Rescue, Air Ambulance, Disaster Relief and special operations support missions.

This new generation helicopter will be equipped with state of the art sensors for a good situation awareness in order to quickly locate and rescue people needing immediate assistance.
The wide unobstructed cabin of the NH90 will be fitted with a complete medical care suite in order to take care of injured persons in flight.

The NH90 is particularly suited to operate in the most demanding conditions like those encountered in Norway since it features a full composite corrosion free airframe, redundant flyby wire controls for increased flight safety along with state of the art sensors and communications systems. The critical parts of the helicopter such as the rotor blades, and air intakes are protected in order to operate in icing conditions.

“NHI is commited to provide the Norwegian MoJ with the best helicopter in terms of performance and safety” explains Julien Negrel Business Director of NHI.
The NH90 already had the opportunity to demonstrate its outstanding SAR capabilities in France when the French Navy rescued 19 people aboard the disabled ship TK Bremen off the coast of France’s region of Brittany.

The NH90 is a joint European helicopter program, which was initiated in 1985. The helicopter type made its first flight in 1995, and the first delivery was made in late 2006. Firm orders have been placed by 14 countries including France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Greece, Spain and Belgium in Europe, as well as Australia, New Zealand and Oman overseas. The NH90, developed in the TTH utility transport and NFH naval versions, proves the ideal solution to meet requirements from many potential additional customers worldwide for a number of duties. The NH90 programme is managed by NAHEMA (NATO Helicopter Management Agency) representing France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands and Portugal, and by the NHIndustries industrial consortium comprising AgustaWestland (32%), Eurocopter (62.5%), Fokker (5.5%).
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New CEO at SMA Helicopter Rescue
6 March, 2012
[Norrköping] From 1 March, Andreas Bestelid has been appointed as CEO of SMA Helicopter Rescue AB, which is the official corporate name of the Maritime Administration's helicopter operations.

- Andreas is a person who has great trust and big respect amongst the helicopter operations and the Maritime Administration, and I am convinced that he will do a very good job in creating a stable and efficient organization, says Naomi Eriksson, who is head of the search and rescue department.

Andreas Bestelid has previously served as acting CEO of the helicopter operations.

- I feel very positive that I have been given a continued confidence to run the company and its business, and that we can continue the work that is initiated by creating a healthy and stable airborne Swedish search and rescue operation, says Andreas Bestelid.
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Swedish Police Wing stays at Arlanda
29 February, 2012
[Stockholm] The Swedish National Police has decided to stay at Arlanda Airport. The Stockholm unit has endured a decade of temporary solutions, but it will now finally be moving in to a permanent base at the airport. The project is under development in cooperation with Swedavia.

During the first ten years of 2000, the police aviation in Stockholm has been moving between several different locations. The unit has moved from Barkarby to Tullinge, to Arlanda, to Berga, to Myttinge and eventually to a temporary placement at Arlanda Airport (at Patria Helicopters).

The senior management of Swedavia, which owns and operates several airports around the country, has approved a permanent establishment at Arlanda Airport.
- If we can finalize this project, we can drop this issue and focus on our business instead, says Håkan Wall, director of Ordningspolisenheten. The Swedish Police Wing is subordinated to Ordningspolisenheten, which is a part of the National Criminal Police (Rikskriminalen).

The Commissioner has in earlier decisions pointed out that Arlanda Airport is a preferred location for the police aviation in Stockholm, and there are several reasons for this. For instance there are many logistical advantages to operate to/from a large airport, and the police can also take advantage of the security structure that already exists at the international airport.

However, the fact that the airport is a major commercial airport that handles hundreds of arrivals every day has also made it difficult to find a solution that benefits all parties.

- Swedavia has worked intensively to evaluate different geographical locations at the airport to find a place where police aviation and scheduled traffic does not interfere with each other. That is not an easy task, but we have already operated at the airport for quite a while through our temporary base, and we have learnt to interact in a positive way, says Håkan Wall.

It is too early to say exactly where the permanent base will be situated, but that’s where the joint project team comes into place.
- Geography is one of the issues they will look at. What we can say now is that none of the existing buildings are suitable, and that the station will be located in a brand new building.

The project team will be establishing the essential basis during the spring, after which the National Police and Swedavia has to go through decision processes in order to launch the project. Mr Wall believes that the police will be operating from the temporary base for yet a couple of years before the new structure come into place.
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Scandinavian Air Ambulance buys EC145 T2
13 February, 2012
[Dallas, TX] Eurocopter announced today that Scandinavian Air Ambulance (Scandinavian MediCopter) is acquiring four EC145 T2s for emergency medical transportation services in the north of Finland.

The newly-ordered helicopters are to be flown from three northern bases – Oulu, Kuopio and one Laplan location in Rovaniemi – using the EC145 T2’s performance, lift and range capabilities for emergency air ambulance flights and inter-hospital transportation of patients.

These operations will be performed in the framework of a medical helicopter service contract recently awarded to Scandinavian Air Ambulance by FinnHEMS (Finnish Authority in charge of EMS Service by Helicopters).

The order was signed today at the Heli-Expo 2012 exhibition in Dallas, Texas, with Dick Lindholm, the President of Scandinavian Air Ambulance, Eurocopter’s Vice President of Programs Wolfgang Schoder, Eurocopter EC145 Program Director Manfred Merk, and Jacques Cardaillac, the Sales Director of Northern Europe at Eurocopter.

The Swedish company began operations in 2001 with helicopter bases in Stockholm and Östersund, subsequently expanding across the country using both rotary-wing and fixed-wing aircraft at the service of Swedish health care authorities and county councils. Further growth occurred in December 2010 when it took over helicopter activity in Finland.
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Bell launches its new BELL 525 Relentless
12 February, 2012
[Dallas, TX] A few minutes ago Bell Helicopter unveiled its brand new helicopter type, the Bell 525 "Relentless". The high-profile launch took place at the large annual American Heli-Expo exhibition in Dallas, TX, which is hosted by Helicopter Association International (HAI).

"Today, we celebrate with our customers – not only the launch of this new product – but the result of our collective efforts to define a new class of helicopter that raises the bar on innovation in the industry," said John Garrison, President & CEO, Bell Helicopter.

"The new Bell 525 Relentless is a culmination of our research and development efforts, which were informed by a representative product development panel of our customers, including PHi, an industry leader in helicopter operations. Relentlessly listening to our customers and using their feedback to provide them with the right product at the right time has been the winning combination," he continued.

"Having PHi and our other customers engage with us on this unprecedented new aircraft validates our product development strategies – placing our customers at the center of everything we do. We appreciate the collaborative spirit we share with all of our customers who have participated in this innovative process," he said.

The Bell 525 Relentless, which has been a top-secret development designated Project X until know, is a medium-size 2 crew / 16 passenger ship with two General Electric CT7-2F1 engines. The >8000 kg helicopter will have a fly-by-wire system, large Garmin G5000H touch-screen displays, a five-blade main rotor, a speed of >140 kts and a range of >400 nm. The cockpit will have a revolutionary ergonomic side-stick control for the cyclic, which provides closer access to displays and improved over-the-nose viewing. The aircraft will be built at Bell's plant in Amarillo, Texas.

Following Bell's launch of its model 525 Relentless, Eurocopter is expected to unveil its newest evolution in a few minutes.
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Eurocopter unveils the new EC 130 T2
12 February, 2012
[Dallas, TX] Eurocopter today unveiled its newest helicopter, the EC130 T2, which features enhanced comfort, improved operational performance and increased versatility for this popular member of the company’s lightweight single-engine product line.

The EC130 T2 was revealed during a ceremony at the 2012 Heli-Expo exhibition in Dallas, Texas, where Eurocopter also announced seven launch customers for the rotary-wing aircraft covering a total of 105 bookings: Maverick Helicopters, Papillon Helicopters, Blue Hawaiian Helicopters, Scandinavian Helicopter Group, Air Commander, Europavia and Enloe FlightCare. The diversity of operations performed by these clients underscores the EC130 T2’s ability to excel in a broad range of missions – from aerial tourism and utility to emergency medical airlift.

“The EC130 T2 is the latest step in Eurocopter’s strategy to expand and evolve our helicopter lineup. The high number of orders is proof that Eurocopter innovation is perfectly aligned with customers’ requirements and the evolution of their operations,” said Eurocopter President & CEO Lutz Bertling. “The EC130 T2 has literally been ‘love at first flight’ for our customers. We are fully committed to begin deliveries of the new EC130 version in 2012.”
While retaining the EC130’s existing external lines, approximately 70 percent of the EC130 T2’s airframe structure has been modified.
New and updated features on the helicopter include the use of a more powerful Arriel 2D turboshaft engine and upgraded main gearbox; the incorporation of an active vibration control system; improved air ventilation, distribution and demisting systems; a cabin interior structure redesign with a full flat floor; a cockpit update for enhanced man-machine interface; new energy-absorbing seats that improve weight and balance for passenger loading; integration of a crashworthy fuel tank; and increased maintenance accessibility for electrical and air conditioning systems.

The EC130 T2’s increased performance is provided by its Turbomeca Arriel 2D engine, which provides 10 percent more average power than the EC130’s current powerplant with lower specific fuel consumption. Based on the proven Arriel 2 engine family, the Arriel 2D benefits from such technology advancements as a new axial compressor and new blade materials, and also provides a higher time between overhaul (TBO) intervals. The Arriel 2D is used at its full-power rating of 952 shp. on the EC130 T2, and is the same engine that equips Eurocopter’s evolved AS350 B3e helicopter in a de-rated version.
Performance improvements for the EC130 T2 include a higher maximum gross takeoff weight (2,500 kg. for internal loads and 3,050 kg. when external loads are carried) and a speed increase of up to 10 kts. Even with these enhancements, the EC130 T2’s external sound level remains within the rules for flights at America’s Grand Canyon National Park – an important factor for tour operators.

Optional features on the EC130 T2 are a new-generation air conditioning unit, tinting of the helicopter’s wrap-around windshield, and a right-hand sliding passenger door. The air conditioning system includes design optimization for improved performance, effective hot/cold temperature control, and better air distribution. Derived from the system on Eurocopter’s EC175 seven-ton-class helicopter, it uses a simple control box with straightforward operating logic similar to climate control units on automobiles.

Future development for the EC130 T2 includes the integration of a new glass cockpit design utilizing dual-screen electronic flight displays matched to a Garmin GPS/NAV/COMM receiver (currently GNS series to be expanded to GTN series). This advanced glass cockpit solution will be available as well for the AS350 B3e helicopter and will be developed through the American Eurocopter subsidiary in the United States and installed with a supplemental type certificate (STC).

Cargo swing
Also planned for future development on the EC130 T2 is a 1,500 kg. cargo swing for an aerial work/utility configuration, and the availability of Eurocopter’s Stylence interior – which merges ergonomics and advanced technology in a refined cabin finishing that offers the environment of a fully-equipped in-flight office for business executives and companies.

The no. 1 EC130 T2 has logged 90 flight hours since its first flight in 2011, demonstrating excellent maturity of the new configuration for a certification scheduled this summer. Final assembly of the initial series production aircraft began last December at Eurocopter’s Marignane, France facility. By the second half of 2012, production will transition completely to the EC130 T2 version.
To date, Eurocopter has sold a total of more than 400 EC130s in its various versions.
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Precautionary landing near Ulricehamn
6 February, 2012
[Ulricehamn] A two-seat helicopter conducted a precautionary autorotation landing near Sämsjön in Ulricehamn at ~15:30 this afternoon. The sole person onboard, a CPL student, was unharmed. The operator says that the successful forced landing was performed following an abnormal sound in the aircraft.
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Patria signs military service contract
19 January, 2012
[Linköping] The Swedish Armed Forces Logistics, FMLOG, has selected Patria as the prime supplier of technical systems and maintenance support for the Swedish Armed Forces Helicopter Wing. The contract is an expansion of the current technical services and support agreement with the Swedish Armed Forces. The three-year contract has an option for additional two years.

The agreement includes a broad spectrum of support services for all the helicopter systems currently in operation and systems coming into operation in the Swedish Armed Forces. Patria provides support for various helicopter models such as HKP 10 (Super Puma), HKP 14 (NH90), HKP 15 (Agusta 109) and HKP 16 (Black Hawk), as well as the models that are being phased out such as HKP 4 (Boeing Vertol) and HKP 9 (Bo105).

The agreement complements the Swedish Armed Forces’ own operations in main operating bases as well as in forward operating bases. The wide-ranging services provided by Patria vary from administration to sales of spare parts and special services within the military helicopter support.

“This agreement is an important step for us in order to show Patria's capability in supporting military programs with cost effective solutions. We've learned to appreciate the significance of the ‘best value for money’-requirement with demanding customers like the Swedish Armed Forces”,says Lassi Matikainen, President of Patria Aviation.
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SAAB in support agreement with Sikorsky
18 January, 2012
[Linköping] The defence and security company Saab has signed a major support agreement with Sikorsky Aerospace Services regarding technical maintenance and support for Sweden's Black Hawk helicopters.
The support agreement is a framework agreement that establishes the manner in which Saab and Sikorsky Aerospace Services will support the Swedish Armed Forces. The parties have agreed to the first installment of the agreement to provide maintenance for the UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters (designated HKP 16) operated by the Swedish Armed Forces.

Saab will establish a maintenance organization, supported by Sikorsky Aerospace Maintenance personnel, for HKP 16 comprising helicopter technicians and other technical support staff based at Malmslätt in Linköping, Sweden.

The first helicopters were handed over to the Helicopter Wing in Malmslätt yesterday, and at the beginning of next year, all 15 UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters designated HKP 16, will be in operational service.

"We are delighted about our collaboration with Sikorsky and the agreement strengthens our commitment to helicopter maintenance. We possess unique technical expertise with regard to support solutions and are certified to conduct helicopter operations. Combined with Saab's stable financial position, this will pave the way for success within the helicopter field. We look forward to a long term partnership with both Sikorsky and the Swedish Armed Forces," says Lars-Erik Wige, Head of the Support and Services business area at Saab.
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HKP 16 Black Hawk handed over
17 January, 2012
[Linköping] Following a record-breaking acquisition process of the Sikorsky UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter, the aircraft was officially handed over to the Armed Forces Helicopter Wing by the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) earlier today. The medium-heavy helicopter system was handed over to the Swedish Supreme Commander (ÖB) Sverker Göransson by FMV's Director General Gunnar Holmgren in a ceremony at the Malmen Helicopter Base in Linköping.

Delayed deliveries of other helicopter systems and the ongoing Swedish intervention in Afghanistan has caused a shortfall of helicopters to meet the increased demand for medical evacuations. As a result of these circumstances the Swedish Government decided that Sweden was going to incorporate a new medium-weight helicopter system in addition to the 18 NH90s (HKP 14) that were already ordered and partially delivered. The helicopters will be operational in Afghanistan by the second quarter of 2013.
The Armed Forces Helicopter Wing has a little more than a year to make the well proven Black Hawk system fully operational. The training of pilots, crews and technicians has already been initiated and the national flying will now be commenced.
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Two dead in Norwegian helicopter accident
11 January, 2012
[Norway] A Swedish helicopter was involved in a fatal accident in Norway earlier today. The helicopter, a Robinson R44 Raven II, went down during a reindeer herding operation near Mosjøen in Nordland at five o’clock this afternoon. There were two people onboard, an experienced pilot and a crewman - both lost their lives in the accident. The cause of the accident is unknown at this time, but it will be examined by the accident investigation board.
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