Helicopter Report

FlightGlobal takes a look at the latest product developments across the various segments of the helicopter market.

  • Arguably the most competitive part of the helicopter market, the light-single segment is, however, not necessarily blessed with the most modern designs. Nonetheless, new models are in development which will bring innovation to the sector.
  • While not selling in the same quantities as their lighter siblings, light-twin helicopters play a significant role in society, notably in law enforcement and emergency medical services missions.
  • Heading up the weight range means these medium-class helicopters are more capable but more complex – and come with a bigger price ticket. Despite this, there are big sellers in this category, alongside new entrants.
  • A few years ago there were many forecasts that the new super-medium-class helicopters would sell by the bucket-load. This has not quite come to pass, although those operating the rotorcraft in this weight class have used their performance benefits to push into new markets.
  • Heavy-twins sit at the top of each manufacturer’s range and while a downturn in oil and gas services has hurt sales in some cases, interest from the search and rescue operators has remained strong.

505-c-Bell

New models set to bring fresh competition to light-single helicopter segment

Arguably the most competitive part of the helicopter market, the light-single segment is, however, not necessarily blessed with the most modern designs. Nonetheless, new models are in development which will bring innovation to the sector.

Victoriafires09_credit Erickson Air-Crane

Helicopters: the crack troops of the war on wildfires

Rotorcraft are able to tackle forest blazes in a way fixed-wing aircraft can not. We look at what the various assets on the market can offer

Civil helicopter deliveries

The global helicopter market in numbers

A breakdown of the global in-service fleets across the civil and military helicopter markets, together with historic fleet and delivery trends.

H175-c-AirbusHelicopters

Slow-selling super-medium-class helicopters make modest headway

A few years ago there were many forecasts that the new super-medium-class helicopters would sell by the bucket-load. This has not quite come to pass, although those operating the rotorcraft in this weight class have used their performance benefits to push into new markets.

AW139-c-Leonardo

New arrivals in medium helicopter sector threaten the old order

Heading up the weight range means these medium-class helicopters are more capable but more complex – and come with a bigger price ticket. Despite this, there are big sellers in this category, alongside new entrants.

H135-c-AirbusHelicopters

Airbus dominates light-twin helicopter market with German-built duo

While not selling in the same quantities as their lighter siblings, light-twin helicopters play a significant role in society, notably in law enforcment and emergency medical services missions. 

Mi171-c-RussianHelicopters

Heavy-twin helicopters are dragged down by offshore slump

Heavy-twins sit at the top of each manufacturer’s range and while a downturn in oil and gas services has hurt sales in some cases, interest from the search and rescue operators has remained strong.

More helicopter news

H225 Japan Coast Guard-c-Airbus Helicopters

Japan Coast Guard orders three more H225s

The Japan Coast Guard (JCG) has ordered three additional Airbus Helicopters H225s, which will take its eventual fleet to 18 examples of the heavy-twin.

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Skyryse presses ahead with fly-by-wire system on R66 helicopter

Advanced flight-control developer Skyryse is forging ahead with plans to bring to market by 2025 a Robinson Helicopter R66 light-single adapted with an innovative fly-by-wire system.

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Transport Canada mandates Bell 429 tail rotor inspections

Canadian regulators have ordered operators of certain Bell 429 helicopters to perform urgent tail rotor blade inspections after defects were found in the manufacturing process.

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Metro Aviation takes final US-built EC145e

Airbus Helicopters has delivered the final EC145e to US emergency medical services specialist Metro Aviation – marking the end of production for the basic variant of the manufacturer’s light-twin.

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Leonardo mulls future for legacy helicopter platforms under updated industrial plan

Leonardo appears to be keeping all options open – including potential divestments – in relation to certain of its legacy helicopter programmes.

Cingolani 2-c-Dominic Perry_FlightGlobal

Comic-loving Cingolani outlines Leonardo’s reinvention to meet changed security outlook

New chief executive details Italian aerospace and defence giant’s strategy for the next five years as it seeks to transform in the face of rising global instability and spearhead evolution in European industry.

Loodswezen Credit Tiebe Matton (002)

NHV Group picks H145 to replace Dauphin for pilotage services

NHV Group is to deploy a pair of five-bladed Airbus Helicopters H145s on maritime pilot transfer operations in the Netherlands following a contract renewal.

S-92 deck-c-Norway SHK

Fatal S-92 accident was not a ‘controlled landing’: Norwegian investigators

Norwegian investigators have confirmed the fatal accident involving a Sikorsky S-92 off the coast of Norway was not a controlled ditching.

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Bristow details S-92 woes and outlines AW189 fleet growth

Bristow Group sees the spare parts shortages afflicting the Sikorsky S-92 lasting until at least the end of the year and is increasingly looking to other helicopter types for its future capacity requirements.

H175 Guangdong-c-Airbus Helicopters

Guangdong Province to take six H175s for public-service missions

Airbus Helicopters has scored a deal from China’s Guangdong Province for six H175 super-medium-twins which will be operated on public service missions including search and rescue and disaster relief.