8-Mar-2017 Source: Vector Aerospace
Vector Aerospace (www.vectoraerospace.com), a global independent provider of aviation maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services, has over the past year continued to pursue certification of the crash-resistant fuel tank (CRFT) being developed with Robertson Fuel Systems LLC as a retrofit for the Airbus AS350/EC130 family of helicopters.
Vector and Robertson have undertaken substantial testing of this safety enhancing technology, including both prototype hardware drop testing and computer aided design and simulation. The two companies are designing the retrofittable CRFT to satisfy U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) standards for newly certified aircraft.
The development of this crash-resistant fuel tank technology as a retrofittable upgrade for legacy helicopter types has been substantiated by a recommendation made by the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) last April that the FAA and EASA prioritize approval of such retrofit solutions for the AS350.
Similarly, a report issued to the FAA’s Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ARAC) by the Rotorcraft Occupant Protection Working Group late last year confirmed that compliance with the resistant fuel system standards of 14 Code of Federal Regulations 27/29.952 is “extremely effective at preventing post-crash fires and thermal injuries.”
“We are confident that our diligent testing and modification work on the CRFT over the past year has paid off,” said Elvis Moniz, Vice President, Business Development at Vector. “The result will be an outstanding crash-resistant fuel tank for the AS350/EC130 series, which will satisfy the more stringent requirements for newly certified aircraft in order to maximize safety and anticipate future mandates. Vector is excited to be working with Robertson to bring this crash-resistant fuel tank to the market later this year.”