Not physically present at Airventure this year because it is undergoing continuous flight test is an interesting two-place French helicopter. The Helineo, built by Thierry André, has American turbine power, a four-hour endurance (including reserves), three-blade rotor, and composite construction.
The exceptionally wide cockpit is the result of the original concept's being of a three-place configuration. André says that three- and four-place designs are possible in the future, but that all his efforts are currently focused on the current model.
André had thought about how to design a better helicopter for nearly 15 years, but between the time he actually set pencil to paper (or mouse to pad) and first flight was a mere 29 months. The Helineo was fabricated by his specialized machining company, Serolor, which also built such technical components as the gearbox and rotor head. The Helineo is virtually all-French: only the instruments, glass (from Switzerland) and powerplant (Solar --USA; or Mistral -- Switzerland) are not produced in France.
Though the first flying example has Solar T-62 turbine power with proprietary FADEC controls, the design allows for a simple substitution of the dual-rotor, 200hp Mistral engine, for increased range on gasoline.
The Helineo first flew on April 26, 2012, at the hands of test pilot Stéphane Lignier (shown in photo with necktie, next to designer/CEO Thierry André); a second turbine machine and a third, with Mistral rotary power, are under construction.
The Helineo will be first offered as a 51% compliant kit, available this year; however, all materials, procedures, tracking, and documentation are being produced to certified specification. The plan is to certify the design and production, and offer ready-to-fly helicopters.
To learn more of the Helineo, visit the French Pavilion at Airventure Oshkosh 2012, space 426; or visit www.heliairdesign.com
Press contact: Hervé Brel: email@example.com
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