Friday, March 3, 2017

Heli-Expo Preview 2017

There's good news for this year's annual Heli-Expo show. As of early last month, 90 percent of the exhibit hall space at the mammoth Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, Texas, was sold. The show runs from March 6 through 9, and the exhibit hall is open March 7 to 9.

The Helicopter Association International (HAI) is expecting 20,000 attendees and 700 exhibitors at this year's show as the price of oil rebounds off the basement floor, OEMs recover from some disappointing new helicopter delivery numbers and the stalling/delay of a few high-profile development programs, and some of the industry's largest operators financially restructure.

As always, the show is content rich with 100 education courses, seminars, workshops and forums, with a heavy weighting to safety issues. Attendees will also have the opportunity to renew their inspection authorization certificates, attend the HFI Helicopter Industry Job Fair and network with their fellow rotorcraft travelers. There's a ton of new content at this year's show in terms of seminars, workshops and professional education courses (some with required extra fees) across a broad spectrum of constituencies: pilots, mechanics, military, and students. Among the hot-button new offerings: Integrating Human Factors Analysis into Your SMS (Safety Management System), Analysis Techniques for Helicopter Flight Data, and Dynamic Rollover and Vortex Ring State Explained.

The Helicopter Foundation International (HFI) Scholarship Golf Tournament kicks off the fun the day before the show, Sunday March 5, at the Cowboys Golf Club in Grapevine with check-in at 10 a.m. and a 12 p.m. shotgun start. The $230 fee covers 18 holes of golf, cart, lunch, two mulligans, $10 golf shop voucher, dinner and tournament contest awards, and evening transport back to hotels. Humiliation, all for a good cause.

The annual Salute To Excellence dinner will fete outstanding achievers in their respective categories the evening of Wednesday, March 8, and attendees will have the opportunity to grill members of the FAA's Rotorcraft Directorate during the March 9 general morning session “Face To Face” on issues of importance to the industry—always a lively, candid and spirited exchange of views not to be missed. Of particular interest are the details of the anticipated FAA rule on the application of crash-resistant fuel systems to legacy aircraft and the continuing efforts to reform the Parts 27 and 29 certification basis more broadly.

(Mark Huber - AINOnline News)

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